Tuesday, April 11, 2017

A Knockout Punch Stops A Molester

There was this guy we worked with who was under suspicion of using his position to molest woman. What was rumored was that he would respond to a job and if the patient was young and attractive he would revisit the home 2-3 days later and state that EMS wanted him to perform a secondary examination to make sure the patient "was ok". He would then perform an examination where he would ask the patient to remove various articles of clothing.
Now as a group we weren't a bunch of choir boys but we had a decent sense of what's right and wrong. We also had an incredible sense of pride as Harlem EMTs/Medics. So one day we were awaiting the captain to announce row call. There was about 15 of us in the lobby of the station. In walk, let's call him Lester. Now I could go on and on describing the cretin but suffice to say if you can bring up a picture of Count Chocula , with his narrow eyes, pointed nose and short, squat body then that's him exactly. Well, he comes in and he's standing there a little off to the side because he can tell that its not a friendly place for him. We pay him no mind and keep jabbing away, talking about the shooting we did last night or the bad motor vehicle accident on the West Side Highway where 3 died but the DWI driver walked away without a scratch. No one notice Sammy sitting off alone by the side, not talking to anyone, just sitting mum. Sammy was one of the senior guys at the station. A real good guy, quite but had your back in an instant if there was trouble. Well, Sammy gets up from the couch and starts walking towards the door. I look to the side to say hello to him and all of a sudden he throws a haymaker right hand which catches Lester right on the chin. Lester goes down like a hole opened up beneath him. Sammy, without losing a step keeps walking right out the door and onto the street. We all jumped when Sammy clocked him. Now we're all standing there looking at the bastard crumpled unconscious on the floor. Everyone is looking at everyone else to see what there going to do. All of a sudden Sey lifts himself from the chair, steps over Lester and walks out the door. That's all the rest of us needed. One by one we quietly walk over the wretch and onto the street. Hey, you want to pull bullshit like that you deserve what you get. If it was my daughter I wouldn't have stopped at one punch. Anyway, we're outside on the street looking into the windows. Sure enough he's still out. He's breathing. Then one of the guy's yells out " Hey, Lieutenant Connawton is leaving". Holy shit! She could really be a pain in the ass if she wants. Activist type. We watch from the window as she gathers her equipment, radio and logbook and leaves her office (right next to the lobby where the incident described above happened) and makes her way to the exit door. Without breaking stride she steps over the unconscious molester, opens the door, walks over to her car and leaves!. We all break out laughing as she drives away. She gives a grin as she passes by.
Lester was able to walk over to the ER across the street and be evaluated. He tried to bring Sammy up on charges with first the cops and then with the department but without a witness (and Sammy's 15 people that vouched for him) all was dropped due to lack of evidence. Within a week Lester was transferred out to Staten Island to a unit that cover three nursing homes there. We never heard for the son of a bitch again.

Monday, April 3, 2017

America's Hearts and Prayers to Russia Following Terror Attack

We in America pray for our Russian friends who today deal with the after effects of heinous, cowardly act of terror that has taken the lives of many innocent people.      

Friday, March 17, 2017

With Great Sadness...Death of FDNY EMT Ivonne Sanchez

This blog is a chronicle of my experiences as a NYC Paramedic but today, with great sadness I write of the death of EMT Ivonne Sanchez, a 14 year veteran who was run down by a suspected gang member who attempted to car jack her vehicle last evening. She left behind 5 children. Prayers out to her family and coworkers today.


Saturday, February 25, 2017

"10-13 Police Officer Shot!"

Steve and I are working the 5pm to 2am shift on 18 Young. We just left St. Luke's after dropping off a patient. Its 1:55 am and we're hoping to get back and not get another call. We pull up to a light on 111th street and Lenox Ave.
"Emergency transmission!!!" comes screaming from the police radio!
"10-13! Police officer shot! I'm shot central! 115 Lenox Ave in the stairwell!!!"
I turn and look and realise we are sitting in front of the building where the cop said she was. I spin the ambulance around and drive up to the door. Steve and I jump out. Steve grabs the trauma bag and we both take off into the building. We come to a staircase and turn in and up. About 3 flights up we hear the cop calling for help. "At least she's alive" I say to Steve.
We come to the 7floor, and turn the corner to the next flight when we find her. She's curled up on the stairs in front of us.
"Where were you hit?" I yell
"My chest!!"
I turn her around and see a small hole in her uniform shirt. I rip the shirt open and see a hole in her vest. Moving my head to catch the light I can see the bullet lodged in the middle of the vest. I pull it out, intact and unbloodied. The vest stopped the bullet!
About a minute goes by and the calvery com's charging up the stairs. City cops by the dozen, crews of 5 ambulances. Cops are screaming, yelling. EMS crews trying to get through the crowd to get to us and the patient. Finally we put her on a long board, get her out if the building and over to the hospital. A quick physical exam showed no other obvious injuries.
We get to St. Luke's probably 3 minutes later and already the street is crowded with news cameras. We take her out of the ambulance and take her into the ER.
I was driving that night so Steve was the writer that night. He goes into the ER to present his patient. I duck out for a quick smoke. I walk to the sidewalk opposite the hospital and am about to light a cigarette when up comes 18 Patrol, my street supervisor, looking like he'd just seen a ghost.
"Hey, Lieutenant! We're good" I begin to say but then I'm jolted to silence by something I recalled while treating the officer. Her name tag said "Cook". " Oh shit! Lieutenant she's just fine! I'm telling you! Calm down she's fine!" Lieutenant, your sister's OK!"

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

A little about my blog

Hello all and thank you for allowing me into the group.
I was a NYC EMT/Paramedic from 1986 until I became a Physician Assistant in 2001. I mostly worked the Harlem, NYC area. Sometimes I get the itch to tell of a memory or experience from that time which I usually call the best time of my life until about 5 years ago when I met my partner Priscilla.
Some of the post may be funny, some may be gross, some may be sad but they are all 100% real. My kids range in age from 14 to 3 years old. I'd like them remembering me as not only some dottering, senile fool but as someone who felt he did something a bit important. So please your welcomed to come laugh or cry with me as I take an erratic trip down memory lane on
Thank you,

Death Over My Right Shoulder

We respond to a call for an "unknown condition" at 132st and Madison Ave.Unkown condition, Cold as Hell out. Lowest priority call, cops aren't dispatched. Arrive to find a man laying in a pool of blood on the street corner. Can't find out exactly what happened. It's night and so much blood. The guy, about 30 years old is barely breathing. I get out a bag valve mask and start assisting respirations as my partner goes to the back of the ambulance to get a spine board. I'm trying to breath for the guy at the same time trying to stem the flow of blood at the base of his head. Over my right shoulder:
"Yo is he gonna be ok?'
I've got enough on my hands than to deal with bystanders.
"Yo, is he gonna be ok?"
"Yo is he gonna be ok?
At least 5 damn times. I can't take it anymore
"He's going to be ok, Chill!" I yell without turning around
An instant later a chill goes up my spine as I hear in a low, matter of fact voice:
"No he's not"
Over my right shoulder goes what looks like a 9mm.


The bullets tear into my patient's chest and stomach. So quick it was I didn't have time to duck and the guys is hotfooting it down Madison Ave.
With church bells going off in my right ear I call a 10-13 (unit needs help) while running across the street and ducking (yea, now!) behind a parked car.
My patient probably had a 1% chance of survival when we arrived. Now he had none.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Look what I found in a compactor

"Manhattan to 18 Young"
I pick up the mic " 18 Young"
" Young, take it over to 129 street and Lexington  for the jumper down"
"10-4, on the way"
" 17 Charlie put us on Young's back"
"10-Charlie, go ahead"
We arrive about 3 minutes later. It's about 10 pm and traffic pretty light. 17 Charlie comes up the one way street and parks right in front of us. Street looks quiet. No one milling around. No crowds yelling "hurry the fuck up, motherfuckers".
Just then a man comes out of a building waving at us. "He's in here". We get our equipment and walk over to the man who is holding the door open for us.
"Come with me! Come with me" he yells excitingly leads us to the elevator. "Hurry! Hurry! He's downstairs!". We hurry over to the elevator. Just as I'm about to step in a guy grabs my shirt. "Yo dude, you can hear him from here". Guy leads me to the compactor room a few steps away where everyone throws their garbage through a small chute that leads to the compactor room. "Open the door to the chute. You can hear him". Without thinking I open up the chute door and put my head down to listen. Out of the darkness comes a hand and grabs me by the collar. There's a guy in the incinerator chute! Not thinking why this guy is in the there I start telling him " Chill out my friend. Don't worry we'll get you out!" The guy directs. Don't matter what I say as the guy brings his other arm up and starts pulling himself out. I watch in amazement as this guy pulls himself  out through this door no bigger than one you would find on a night table. It takes a few minutes before he pulls himself out. I back into the hallway and stop. He stops too. Instantly I notice several things; he's about thirty years old, about six foot-eight, and ripped like Bruce Lee. How did I know that.? He was naked as the day he was born. I look up at his eyes and they are open wide and he's looking around like someone who just got off a bus on Mercury. "Holy shit! This guy's a fucking duster!". I look around and see two cops walk in the building. "Hey guys, over here" I motion. They come over with bewildered faces. "Guy is a duster, just crawled out of the compactor". Cop opens the door to the compactor room, turns to me" he crawled out of that"! " I watched it and still can't believe what I saw".
Turning back to the patient I ask "What's your name?". He answers "where's Candy?". "What?" I say. "Where's Candy?" He replies in a monotone voice. Before I can ask him anything further a woman comes running down the hall yelling "you stupid motherfucker" and punches him so hard in the side of the face I was surprised he only dropped to one knee. The cops quickly grab her. After a few minutes she starts to calm down. After a few more minutes  she's composed enough to tell us what happened. "We was upstairs watching a movie. I told him I was going to take a shower. I come out a little while later and smell some funny shit. I start looking around for him. As I  get close to the door and I hear him calling "Candy" but I don't see him nowhere . I go out in the hallway and I'm passing the garbage door and I hear the dumb motherfucker calling from there. I'm still in my towel so I called the super and he called you guys while I put something on". One cop somehow kept a straight face while the rest of us took the patient around the wall and tried to be silent as we could while laughing our asses off. Looking at the patient we saw his only injury was a small, superficial laceration to his right thigh. We tried to take him out in a stretcher but he refused. None of us put up a fight. Walking out with the patient I hear Candy in the back round yelling " don't think you ever seeing me again. I might fuck a stupid motherfucker but not a crazy one". We laugh again, lead him over to the ambulance buckle him up and proceed over to to the Harlem Hospital Psych emergency room.