Weekly Zoom call among friends may have saved Palos Verdes woman's life

A Palos Verdes woman is thanking her friends and a medical team for saving her life after she suffered a stroke while on a weekly Zoom call.
A Palos Verdes woman is thanking her friends and a medical team for saving her life after she suffered a stroke while on a weekly Zoom call.

"That day was a day like any other," said Dorothy Farris.


While she was on the call with her longtime girlfriends, the 69-year-old experienced symptoms of a stroke.

"It was, 'Dorothy?' and I said gibberish and I kind of fell over," Farris explained.

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Her friends immediately noticed something was wrong and sent help.

"Pam Barkley called 911, Rita called my husband's cell phone because he was out on the patio. I was in my office doing this call. He would have never found me."

She was rushed to Torrance Memorial Medical Center for surgery, which was a success.

"Frankly, I felt great from the next morning," Farris said.


"Her coming in, walking in, talking to us, and thanking us -- that means the world to us, and that's why we do what we do," said Dr. Shlee Song, of the comprehensive stroke center at Torrance Memorial Medical Center.

According to the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S. and leading cause of adult disability.

On average, someone in the country suffers a stroke every 40 seconds, and someone dies of a stroke every four minutes.

"I will tell you, it's one of the good things that's come out of COVID. If it wasn't for COVID, my girlfriends and I wouldn't have started this weekly call," Farris said.

She added that she's thankful to be standing and is grateful not only to her friends, but the medical team.

"They saved my life, and there's really not a way to thank people for doing that," Farris said.
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