My older brother’s a police officer in a relatively low-key Northern, NJ town, but it seems that no matter how pleasant a place looks, serious sh*t goes down on a daily basis. I’ve heard some horror stories. Chasing down a completely sober man who knifed a 12-year-old boy. Getting a call in the middle of the night when a crackhead accidentally rolled over on their baby in the middle of the night, suffocating it dead, performing CPR on the kid, watching it’s rib cage rise from the air as its arms and head hang lifelessly.
And sure there are plenty of crappy officers who aren’t affected by this kind of stuff and who aren’t trying to perform heroics on a daily basis and seem more concerned with giving you tickets for an expired registration on your car rather than finding the guy who smashed in your front door and robbed you blind.
But then there are officers like Peter Getz.
Here he is seated with Josibelk Aponte after her college graduation. Getz rescued Josibel when she was 5 years old, after a brutal fire ripped through a Connecticut apartment, killing one of her relatives.
Getz performed CPR on Josibel in the back of the police cruiser on the way to the hospital. When speaking with the Hartford Courant, Getz was humble regarding his bravery.
“I did what I was trained to do, what I had to do.”
Josibel, however, doesn’t see it that way.
“I almost died, but I was given a second chance at life. And it was because of Peter and all the authorities, everyone who came to help that day.”
Josibel’s now 23 years old and has graduated from Eastern Connecticut State University. The now retired Getz attended the commencement, watching alongside Josibel’s family.
“Pretty proud of her, for all the adversity that she has overcome. Both physically and mentally, having to go through that, and losing one of your loved ones, that you were very close to. That she had stayed the course and that she had come out as a shining star.” Getz said.
Getz recalled the traumatic day where he saved Josibel’s life.
“Josi was unconscious and basically in cardiac arrest, and I took Josi from the fireman, because he was in full bunker gear — there was no ambulance available. And since we were kind of close to the hospital, I was not going to wait for an ambulance, so I had another officer drive my cruiser, and I did CPR on her on the way to the hospital.”
Aponte first reached out to Getz two years ago on Facebook, a moment that the officers admits, was an emotional blast from the past.
“She started to reach out to me and sent me an email. I think she Facebook-stalked me, is what she calls it…Honestly, a lump came in my throat. It was kind of cool, you know, that somebody would even remember you from that long ago. I mean, I always remembered her. There’s a picture on my desk that her mom gave me a year or two after one of her birthdays.”
All right now that I’ve got you crying, enjoy the rest of your day, please.
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