Editorial note: Some of the images below contain graphic content.
FABIUS, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The Fabius Fire Department will be honored at their family picnic this weekend by the Firefighters Association of the State of New York with the organization’s “EMT Provider of the Year” award.
The award was presented last month in White Plains, but will be presented again this weekend at home.
The department was nominated for the heroic work of its volunteers on September 21, 2020, responding to a car crash on Route 80.
First on the scene was Lt. Richard Kadlubowski, who found the driver of a car with a 10-foot piece of a chain-link fence’s metal pipe through his neck.
In an interview with NewsChannel 9, Lt. Kadlubowski said: “It’s never a good feeling when you’re first there, whether watching somebody’s house burn or impaled by a pipe. It’s a helpless feeling.”
The driver had lost control of his SUV, went through the fence, dragged the pipe down the road until crashing into a patch of pine trees.
As more firefighters arrived, they used the Jaws of Life to cut feet of the pipe from either side of the man’s neck.
Chief Warren Virgil said, “If we use (The Jaws of Life) once a year, that’s a lot. This time it was worth its weight in gold.”
The man involved in the crash, Francki Perez, was awake and alert the entire time He said: “I was thinking (about) my wife and my daughter, that’s the only thing I was thinking.”
Only doctors could remove the last piece of pipe, which was block his jugular from bleeding out during his helicopter ride to Upstate Hospital. Doctors treated him to full recovery.
Lt. Rich Kadlubowski said: “I don’t do it for the honor. I don’t do it for the glory. I do it just to help the people.”