At a post-Christmas wedding in New Jersey, an off-duty EMT who was working as a caterer saves the pastor’s life when he collapses during the ceremony. Reverend Anthony Palmer was in the middle of officiating the wedding when he suffered a cardiac arrest. "I said it would require patience, love, kindness and then I passed out," Palmer recalls.
Fortunately for the reverend, Valeria Franco, an off-duty EMT in West Paterson, happened to be working as a caterer at the wedding and she sprang into action to save Palmer. For nearly a half hour, Franco performed CPR on the reverend until paramedics arrived and took over. Because of Franco’s quick reaction, Palmer survived and is now recovering.
Earlier this week, the city of Paterson, New Jersey, recognized Franco for her life-saving efforts and Paterson Mayor Andrew Sayegh presented her with a certificate. "Hopefully people will see this and be inspired to be an EMT or take CPR training," Sayegh says. And the couple whose wedding was interrupted are planning on completing their nuptials soon … with Palmer there to finish the job.