Off-duty firefighters save man in cardiac arrest at Patriots game

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Two off-duty firefighters were at Gillette Stadium last weekend for the Patriots game when a fan suffered cardiac arrest and collapsed nearby.

"We could hear [the fan's son] yell to his father, 'Dad, dad, wake up, what's wrong,'" Westford firefighter John Tuomi said.

That's when Tuomi and Groton firefighter James Crocker jumped into action.

"We realized there was no pulse and we immediately got him out of the seat, put him on the ground, performed compressions and started CPR,” Crocker said.

The small seats and tight rows, packed by excited Patriots fans, created a less than ideal situation.

"It was a tight space with us being in the aisle at Gillette Stadium. Jimmy was able to get in a row ahead of us and kneel, which was a perfect position for him,” Tuomi said.

The middle aged man's pulse was coming and going, so the off-duty firefighters sent for a defibrillator.

"Once the AED arrived, we were able to apply the AED and use it effectively and it worked well,” Crocker said.

They used it once and then again, until an EMS crew arrived. Crews applied it a third time in the ambulance, but the man was saved due to the quick actions of the off-duty firefighters.

"We thought we had won the Super Bowl or something like that. It was pretty nice,” Crocker said.

The man was taken to a nearby Norwood hospital, where he was treated and released.