Verrazano Employees' Actions Saved Man's Life

Bridges and Tunnels Officers Paul Padilla and December Bailey
Bridges and Tunnels Officers Paul Padilla and December Bailey

A group of employees from the Verrazano-Narrows are credited with saving the life of a man who passed out in his car in the facility parking lot after suffering an apparent heart episode.

The 54-year-old Staten Island man was unconscious and not breathing when the group used a defibrillator and administered CPR until city Emergency Medical personnel arrived.

The man pulled into the employee parking the afternoon of Aug. 21st and told Senior Project Manager Aiman Youseff he wasn't feeling well and was going to drive to the hospital. Then he passed out.

Youseff called for assistance and Bridges and Tunnels Officers Paul Padilla and December Bailey came quickly to the motorist's aid, Padilla with a defibrillator, Bailey with an oxygen tank. A quick examination indicated how serious the situation had become. The driver had no pulse or respiration, says Lt. Cheryl DeSetto who also responded.

Padilla and DeSetto immediately put the defibrillator to use. Padilla, along with Maintenance Superintendent Daniel Fortunato, alternated performing CPR for several minutes, pumping on the man's chest, while Sgt. Michael Chiarelli, working at the Verrazano desk, coordinated rescue efforts by notifying emergency personnel from the Fire Department and NYPD.

The driver's heartbeat returned shortly before Fire Department EMTs arrived on the scene. The man was taken to Staten Island University Hospital. Later that evening, several doctors and a member of the man's family let Verrazano officials know that their actions helped save the man's life.

"The dedication and teamwork shown by these employees should be applauded," said Director of Bridges South William McCann, who participated and coordinated the emergency effort. "We're extremely proud of them."

Verrazano Employees' Actions Saved Man's Life
VNB Crew Caption: (l to r) Director of Bridges South William McCann; Aiman Youseff, Senior Project Manager VN Engineers; Bridges and Tunnels Lt. Cheryl DeSetto, Verrazano Maintenance Superintendent Daniel Fortunato, and Bridges and Tunnels Sgt. Michael Chiarelli.