Anton Spagnoletti, a Winston-Salem firefighter, has been saving lives for 29 years. He was fit, a nonsmoker and had no previous signs of heart trouble when he suffered a massive heart attack while on duty. Within 15 minutes of the attack, he was in the emergency department at Wake Forest Baptist, where he went into cardiac arrest. He was revived with a defibrillator and then rushed to the cardiac catheterization lab where Sanjay Gandhi, MD, performed an emergency procedure to remove a 2-inch clot from a blocked artery.
After his recovery, Anton visited the emergency medicine and heart teams at Wake Forest Baptist to show his appreciation. “Every single day they save lives and nobody really knows it. I’ve been a firefighter 29 years, and it felt necessary to go back and thank them and praise them for what they do,” he says. “I am so thankful that they do what they do every single day.”