Hometown Heroes: Verizon workers save young man

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Pioneer Valley Red Cross will honor the 2014 Hometown Heroes Thursday morning at the Mass Mutual Center; highlighting heroes who’ve saved lives and improved the quality of life for others.

22News reporter Sy Becker find out how two Verizon employees and a Hampden County corrections officer saved the life of a man who was close to death, and the impact it will forever have on their lives.

“It was simply like an exhilarating wow, I couldn’t believe that just happened,” said John Weston, a Hometown Hero.

Verizon employees John Weston and Joe Allen, and Corrections Officer Maryanne Alben vividly recall that day shortly before Christmas when the fate of the near lifeless young man lying in the street was placed in their hands.

Corporal Alben said, “It was tough. You had no time to think, and we found out later If It was another forty five seconds this man could have been dead.”

“He was laying there dying, It was kind of like freaked out, the heart starts pounding, and I ran out, this guy was laying there, this guy was blue, I had never seen anyone in such bad shape before,” said Allen.

Weston said, “We rolled him on his back, I gave him chest compressions, and after 30 chest compressions or so I believe he let out a gasp.”

The young man, these three saved, probably often thinks of his benefactors. We know for certain the Hometown Heroes who saved his life often think of him, and the grim alternative, had our Hometown Heroes not been in the right place at the right time and did exactly the right thing while the ambulance was on its way.

If you cannot attend the event in person and would like to watch, 22News will be live streaming it on WWLP.com, starting at 7:30 Thursday morning.