Two local firefighters are being credited with saving a fan’s life after he suffered cardiac arrest and collapsed just before kickoff at Sunday’s New England Patriots game at Gillette Stadium.
According to WJAR, Johnston, Rhode Island, firefighter Anthony Colella and his friend, Needham, Massachusetts, firefighter Mark McCullough, jumped into action when the fan was unable to breathe after getting some food caught in his throat.
The man reportedly went into cardiac arrest, but the two off-duty firefighters were able to revive him.
They said the man they saved was alert and talking before he was transported to an area hospital. His condition was not immediately known.
“We don’t do it for the fame, we do it because this is what we signed up for, my brothers and sisters in the local Johnston Fire Department Local 1950,” Colella told WJAR. “This is what we train for. We train for this exact moment. We strive to have a positive outcome.”
Bridget Condon, an on air host and reporter for the NFL Network, saw the whole thing unfold and posted about it on X, formerly known as Twitter.
“My parents are at the Patriots game with their friends and someone in their section just had a heart attack and my dad’s friend (also a firefighter) started giving him CPR and saved his life,” she said. “Forget the football. This is the best thing I’ve heard all day.”
She later shared a photo of the two firefighters as well.
The Needham firefighters union also posted a message on their Facebook page Monday morning, praising McCullough and Colella for their off-duty save.
“Great job Needham Fire Department’s own Firefighter Mark McCullough and Anthony Colella of the Johnston, RI Fire Department. Mark and Anthony spotted a fan who had became unresponsive at the game,” they said. “Firefighters rapidly began CPR after checking the fan’s airway and pulse. The fan regained consciousness and Mark and Anthony stayed by their side until EMS arrived on scene.”