Good news: Stricken man is revived at Staten Island gym

[Editor’s Note: Post originally appeared on, where I was a breaking news intern from January to August 2016.]

FDNY Lieutenant Michael Romano, Probationary Firefighter Niko Negron, and nurses Jennifer Cosentino and Erica Oppenheim teamed up to help save a man’s life at a gym in Tottenville.

It was close to noon Thursday at Retro Fitness at 2965 Veterans Road West.

Negron, Cosentino and Oppenheim, who were all off-duty and working out, were alerted to a man by the name of Frank, who was pale-faced with his head down and arms hanging.

“Everyone was looking around like they didn’t know what to do,” Oppenheim said. “They were just staring. To actually be able to help and know what to do and keep everyone calm was a great thing.”

Once they found he had no pulse and his lips were turning blue, they went to work.

Negron, who worked at this particular Retro Fitness for three years before becoming a firefighter, pointed Oppenheim to the defibrillator.

The moment Oppenheim brought the defibrillator over, Consentino prepared the device and Negron continued with CPR.

Before checking to see if he needed the shock to his chest, Romano made sure people in the gym were at a safe distance. As soon as the defibrillator advised a shock, they did it and his a pulse came back.

EMS was called at 11:48 p.m. and arrived at 11:52 p.m., according to an FDNY spokeswoman.

Cosentino made sure they knew it was a possible stroke.

He was taken to Staten Island University North, the spokeswoman said.

“We do it all the time and we don’t realize it.” Cosentino said. “Not that you don’t appreciate it, but you don’t acknowledge it like, ‘Hey, we did that today. I did that. We saved that patient’s life.’ Sometimes we do and we’ll high-five each other and tell each other ‘good job, team.’ Things like that. And then we’re like, ‘All right. Time to go to lunch.’ We should give ourselves a little more credit.”

For Negron and Consentino, this was a much more personal situation than normal for them because they see the man at the gym all the time. He was a familiar face that they’d say hi to on occasion.

“It’s a great feeling to know that I was able to help this guy,” Negron said. “It’s nice when you work hard, do all the training and it actually comes through and works. That’s why I do what I do.”

The patient was discharged from the hospital Friday, an FDNY spokeswoman said.

About Jonathan Reyes

I joined the Daly Dose Of Hoops staff in the fall of 2016 and am the beat writer for Wagner College and the Northeast Conference. I'm also the editor of this here website, WerdyNerdy Space, and a contributor to The GWW. My background in journalism started as a sports intern for the Riverdale Press and News 12 The Bronx/Brooklyn and as a breaking news intern at the Staten Island Advance/ I graduated in 2016 from Manhattan College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications, concentration in journalism. While in Riverdale, I wrote for Manhattan's student newspaper, The Quadrangle, where I began as a staff writer before becoming assistant sports editor, sports editor and senior writer. During my time at the Quad, I earned Manhattan's Excellence in Journalism, Best Sports News Article and Most Prolific awards, including nominations for eight similar awards in my four years.
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