Priest Saves Man in Restaurant

Posted by cocreator on March 11, 2014
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A Knoxville priest is being hailed a hero after saving a man who collapsed during lunch Monday afternoon at Aubrey’s Restaurant off Northshore Drive.

Father David Boettner of Sacred Heart Cathedral says what started as a peaceful lunch with friends, quickly turned into a desperate situation.

“They started calling out to a doctor, so I climbed over the booth and I could see that this gentleman was unconscious,” Boettner said.

Father David Boettner the Saviour

Father David Boettner the Saviour

Walter Fitzgerald Jr., who works at South College, had stopped breathing. Boettner sprang into action, trying to save his life by doing CPR.

“One of his coworkers and I started working on him. She was doing mouth to mouth and I was doing the chest compressions,” Boettner said.

But Fitzgerald still wasn’t breathing.

“I was very scared for him, and I was worried that this was not going to end well,” Boettner said.

Father Joe Reed was there eating lunch with Boettner and says as quickly as things turned bad, they got better.

“All of a sudden the man just came to. It was very dramatic, but it was wonderful to see how quickly Father David jumped into action,” Reed said.

“I was so excited. I was so overwhelmed that he was breathing again,” Boettner said.

Now, Boettner is preaching about the importance of CPR training.

“I would encourage anybody that can to learn CPR because those first few minutes when somebody has a heart attack are absolutely critical, and if you can be there to help somebody what a gift that is,” Boettner said.

Fitzgerald is being treated at UT Medical Center. He was listed in stable condition Monday night.

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Parishioner & Cops Save Priest in Church

Posted by cocreator on June 29, 2010
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St. Benedict’s parishioner Mary Louise Perez was in the choir loft during Mass on Sunday when Father Andrew McGuire collapsed mid-service in full view of the congregation.

“He was just turning from the altar and walked to the end to sit down in his chair,” Perez said. “He just keeled over right flat on his face.”

According to Montebello city fire Battalion Chief Rick Lynski, personnel from Engine 55 responded to St. Benedict’s Catholic Church following reports of an about 80-year-old man down at about 10:44 a.m.

Montebello police officers were already on scene and using a device known as an automated exterior defibrillator on McGuire. Lysnki said the patient had no pulse.

Prior to taking the clergyman to the hospital, Lynski said a pulse was established and by the time he arrived at the emergency room, McGuire was conscious and speaking.

Perez, 78 and her husband Joe, 82, who have sung in the choir at St. Benedict’s for the past six years, said an unknown parishioner began administering CPR before emergency personnel arrived. Joe Perez said he later saw emergency workers using the defibrillator on McGuire.

“I saw them give (McGuire) a shock because I saw his legs kick out,” he said.

A woman who answered the phone at St. Benedict’s on Monday and declined to give her name said the pastor was in intensive care but added he was in stable condition.

Rose Lopez, who works in the parish rectory, said she did not know the name of the individual who rendered aid before police and firefighters arrived.

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