Enjoy all your local news and sports for less than 6¢ per day.

Subscribe Now

LCRA throws Llano County a lifesaving grant

LCRA and city of Llano representatives present a $13,265 check to Llano County for new automated external defibrillators and first-aid kits. Pictured are (from left) Llano County Sheriff-elect Marquis Cantu, County Treasurer Cheryl Regmund, County Auditor Kelly Eckhardt, County Grant Administrator and Chief Deputy Treasurer Cheryl Keep, County Emergency Management Coordinator Gilbert Bennett, LCRA board member Carol Freeman, Llano County Judge Ron Cunningham, LCRA board members Margaret Voelter and Michael Allen, Llano City Secretary Kim Wagner, City Manager Martin Mangum, LCRA Regional Affairs representative Susan Patten, and Hamilton EMS District Chief Kevin Tisdell. Photo courtesy of LCRA

A grant from the Lower Colorado River Authority just made Llano County a little safer. The $13,265 purchased nine sets of emergency medical equipment for public spaces across the county. 

The grant is part of the LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program

The emergency equipment packages include automatic external defibrillators and standard first-aid kits and will be located in Llano County libraries, county annexes, and the courthouse. One will be kept with the Road and Bridge Department crews.

Llano County Emergency Management Coordinator Gilbert Bennett said the county did not have this sort of equipment widely available before the grant.

“As a retired paramedic, I feel it’s important to have a tool that can save a life on hand,” he told “I personally have seen (defibrillators) work. It’s a great feeling when (people) come back and say ‘thank you.’”

The defibrillators now stationed across Llano County can be used to stabilize victims of cardiac arrest by delivering an electric shock that re-establishes the heart’s normal rhythm. According to the National Institute of Health, having an automatic external defibrillator (AED) on hand is associated with nearly doubling the rate of survival for victims suffering from an out-of-hospital heart attack. 

A report from AED USA states that a cardiac arrest victim has a 74 percent chance of survival if an AED is used within three minutes of the event. These kits are made to be used by anyone, even if they have not been trained.

“You never know when a heart attack is going to happen,” Bennett said. “(Llano County) is now a safer place.”