MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A pair of Miami-Dade police officers and a complaint officer were recognized Thursday by the department for their efforts in saving a bicyclist’s life.
Vladimir Ruiz and his friends were riding bikes in Amelia Earhart Park on June 6th when he suddenly collapsed.
His friends immediately called 911 and explained to the complaint officer, Beatriz Perez, that he was unconscious and not breathing. Perez gave detailed instructions over the phone on how to provide CPR as she dispatched an emergency call to officers in the area.
Officer Jose Martinez was on the park grounds and immediately grabbed a nearby bicycle so that he could get to Ruiz, who was on the bike trails, faster.
Officer Miguel Siverio then arrived and used an automated external defibrillator (AED) in an attempt to resuscitate Ruiz.
Through their efforts, they were able to regain a pulse.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue arrived and took Ruiz to a nearby hospital. Once he was stabilized, he was transferred to Kendall Regional Medical Center where he is undergoing further medical treatment.
Thursday morning, Miami-Dade Police Director Juan J. Perez recognized the trio for their quick actions that saved Ruiz’s life.
The officers say they didn’t exactly feel like heroes. They said they were just doing their job.
“This is what we signed up for to save lives whether we’re getting choked up, whether we’re on the job or not on the job,” said Silverio.
“When he takes that first breath you have your emotions all over the place from stress to happiness to know he is going to be OK.”
Ruiz’s family also on hand to thank them personally.
“We have 2 birthdays to celebrate now, his real birthday and June 6th that would be his 2nd birthday and we would honor that birthday for as long as we live.”
“I have so much love for you guys.”
Ruiz delivered a taped message from his hospital bed, “I’m just a lucky person to be here talking to you guys, I wouldn’t be here without you guys. You saved my life.”
Ruiz underwent 7 long hours of surgery during a quintuple bypass, but he is recovering and walking.
Officer Martinez told him when he gets back on his bike he will take that first ride with him.