Wolfpack Gunshot Response Team: Out of the projects come the saviors of their hood

by Suncere Ali Shakur

The four-member Wolfpack Gunshot Response Team successfully completed their Stop the Bleeding course and are ready to save lives. From left, they are DeAndre “Boss Hog” Glover, Suncere Ali Shakur, Belton “Big Beard” Sanders and Breniesha Lightfoot.

It was a historic day in April when a team of young people completed their training to take on the job of saving their hood in Cleveland, Ohio. Four young adults ranging from 19-29 became the first civilian gunshot response team in Ohio history. Not to mention they are African American and from the projects – the Willson Towers and Willson Family homes – known to be some of the most violent housing projects under Cleveland’s Cayahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority, or CMHA.

Breniesha Lightfoot, DeAndre “Boss Hog” Glover and Belton Sanders, along with local activist and Washington, D.C., native Suncere Ali Shakur, make up the Wolfpack Gunshot Response Team of Cleveland. Our job is to stop the bleeding from wounds for the first 5-10 minutes until EMS arrives.

DeAndre Glover, better known as Boss Hog, himself was a gunshot wound survivor, taking two slugs in the back during a shoot-out outside a bar one night.

Breniesha Lightfoot works as a school aid with small children.

Belton Sanders is a reliable gentle giant and great community person.

All three young adults are helping to change the way the world looks at people from the projects. They completed their Stop the Bleeding course and now are ready to help save lives in a word of steadily increasing gun and bomb violence.

The Wolfpack Gunshot Response Team needs support. We are just starting out as a non profit and heavily rely on donations for equipment, uniforms and transportation to classes to upgrade our training. Please go to our GoFundMe (https://www.gofundme.com/cle-wolfpack-gunshot-response-team) and make a donation.

Breniesha, called PrettyNiesha, practices gunshot first aid.
DeAndre practices tourniquet technique.

Below is a list of medical supplies we need for our trauma kits. This and much more critical information is available at https://www.gordonsquarecpr.org/bleeding-control-kit-recommendations.

Trauma kit essentials:

Medical gloves are essential to protecting the user from blood and bodily fluids. Latex should be avoided, as many people are allergic to latex. These are available from Amazon or any drugstore. Consider carrying two pairs, in case one pair rips, becomes contaminated, or if there are multiple rescuers.

Regular gauze is used to provide direct pressure over surface extremity and head wounds or to pack deep junctional wounds. Rolled or vacuum packed gauze is preferred over gauze pads, because they can be used for wound packing. Rolled gauze can be found at most drug stores, but vacuum-packed gauze is mostly found online.

Hemostatic gauze may be used in place of regular gauze. This is gauze that is impregnated with agents that promote blood clotting and is thought to stop bleeding faster. Again, rolled or z-folded gauze is preferred over gauze pads because they can be used for wound packing. Several types are on the market, including Quickclot rolled, Quickclot z-folded, Celox and chitogauze.

Compression bandage – some sort of stretch bandage – is needed to hold gauze in place. Options include Coban (ace wrap), the Israeli Bandage or Emergency Trauma Dressing.

Tourniquets are used to stop severe extremity bleeding. Commercial tourniquets approved by the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) are recommended because they have undergone rigorous testing. Such models include the CAT, SOF-T and SOF-T wide.

Trauma shears or scissors are used to remove clothing and cut bandages to size. Cheaper, easily replaceable shears may be desired over expensive models. They come in 5.5-inch and 7.5-inch models.

For more information, call Sunni Shakur at 512-750-4812.