Dying Man Saved by Verizon Employees in Massachusetts

Every now and then, a story of heroism catches your attention. And you can’t help but tell a friend, share with a loved one. In the latest example, two technicians saved the life of an unconscious man lying in the street in Springfield, Massachusetts, last week.

Joe Allen of Granby, Mass., a 19-year employee of Verizon, and John Weston of Longmeadow, Mass., who has worked for the company for 30 years, were heading for their truck to go out on a job when Allen noticed the man.

“As I was leaving the Federal Street office yesterday, there was a man lying face down on the sidewalk outside the back door of the cafeteria,” Allen said. “As I approached him I noticed he was blue. I thought he was dead. I checked and he still had a weak pulse but he wasn’t breathing at all. I turned him on his side and he gasped for air. One of the cafeteria workers had the manager . . . call for an ambulance, I ran over to get John (he was in his van getting ready to leave).”

 It was at that point that John came over to assist. Weston checked his mouth for an obstructed airway. “Since the guy wasn’t breathing and had blood all over his mouth, I went to go get a plastic rescue breather. When I returned, John was giving chest compressions to the man,” Allen said.

“He stopped for a moment to check and the guy started breathing on his own and the color rapidly returned to his body. This was a frightening experience for all of us, and without quick action this man would have died.”

The unidentified man was taken to a local hospital where he was treated and released.

Weston is a former Army sergeant who has had CPR training.

“It was an amazing thing to save himQueens Techs,” Weston told the Springfield Republican, the local newspaper. “In another minute, he would have been brain dead. I was in the right place at the right time. It took about 30 seconds before he started breathing again, but it seemed like forever. He was a human being. He was a human soul lying on the sidewalk. Hopefully, he has a merry Christmas.”

“These men demonstrated a great deal of care and concern for someone who desperately needed help,” said their manager Rob Pumphret. “Joe and John reflect the values that our employees bring to work every day.  I’m proud to work with them.”

The Springfield incident is the second time in two months when Verizon technicians have come to the rescue of people in their communities. On Oct. 30, Verizon technicians Michael Popowich, Anthony Howley and John Gilday saved a woman who was being assaulted on a street in Queens. Last week the technicians were honored at a ceremony at New York City Hall.

Want to Learn CPR?
The American Red Cross and the American Heart Association offer classes on CPR training. Details on where and when are available on their respective websites.