If you don’t believe in things like karma or divine intervention, ponder the following story. It starts when Victor Giesbrecht stopped by the side of the road to help a stranded motorist change a flat tire.

The car with the flat tire was driven by Sara Berg, who was traveling on I-94 some 70 miles east of Minneapolis when she heard the tell-tale thump-thump-thump of a tire that’s lost air pressure. Berg was traveling with her cousin, and neither woman knew how to change a flat tire by the roadside.

Enter Giesbrecht, who was driving the same piece of interstate with his wife. Giesbrecht stopped to help the stranded women, and 15 minutes later both cars were back on the road.

A quarter mile down the highway, Berg noticed that Giesbrecht’s truck had pulled to the side of the interstate, and the man’s wife was frantically trying to flag down passing motorists. Giesbrecht, slumped over the steering wheel, had just suffered a heart attack.

Here’s where the story gets interesting; Berg, it seems, is a nursing assistant, and was able to begin CPR within minutes of Giesbrecht going into cardiac arrest. She maintained CPR until paramedics arrived and restarted the man’s heart with a defibrillator.

The Boston Herald reports that Giesbrecht was in serious but stable condition as of Tuesday, but both he and his wife believe that Berg’s timely intervention saved his life.

The cynical among you may point out that changing the tire likely caused the heart attack, but chances are good it would have happened anyway. That it happened at a time and place where trained help was immediately available is what makes us think.

To quote Shakespeare, “there are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Think of that the next time you drive by a car stranded with a flat tire.