Photo Credit: Matt West
Mike Reynolds had just performed a beautiful song he wrote to his son and his new bride on their wedding day when the father of the groom collapsed, hurling the happy occasion into chaos.
After singing and playing guitar to a melody he penned called “I Do,” Reynolds walked over to the tables at the White Cliffs Country Club in Plymouth Saturday night to shake the minister’s hand — and his heart stopped and he sank to the floor.
Reynolds, 66, is alive today, his family happily told me yesterday, because Plymouth police Sgt. Jason Higgins happened to be dining with his family at the club that night.
“My husband actually died twice and Jason brought him back to life,” Sandy Reynolds said from her husband’s hospital room. “He’s a hero.”
Flash back to the Milton couple’s wedding Saturday night. Groom David Hazelwood said he stood with his guests for a standing ovation after his father’s performance. Suddenly his new bride, Natasha, shouted with alarm, “Your dad! Your dad!”
[. . .]
In the club’s restaurant, Higgins, 41, was out with his fiancee’s family for dinner to thank them for helping out with the couple’s 5-week-old baby girl. A club employee recognized the police sergeant.
“She started screaming my name and she needed my help,” said Higgins, a father of three who has been with the department for 19 years.
Higgins ran into the reception room as the DJ, believe it or not, was playing “Amazing Grace.” Guests were praying and crying. Reynolds wasn’t breathing and had no pulse.
Higgins got down on his knees and began doing chest compressions. A female guest set up a defibrillator and put the pads on the man’s chest. The bride’s brother administered rescue breaths.
All Higgins could think, he recalled yesterday, was, “I want to save this guy.”
It wasn’t the first time Higgins was asked to save a life while off-duty.
He came to the rescue of a choking teenager nearly three years ago by giving him the Heimlich maneuver.
[. . .]
“It was amazing,” Higgins said.
The reception erupted into applause.
Sandy said Higgins stayed with her the whole time, even holding her hand.
An assistant Culver City, Calif., school superintendent, Mike Reynolds was taken to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, where he is scheduled to undergo bypass surgery today, his wife said.
[. . .]
“I didn’t do anything heroic. Police officers across this state provide critical care to the public on a daily basis,” he said. “We just do what we signed up for.”
But Sandy Reynolds and her family aren’t buying that. The doctors and nurses told her it was Higgins’ chest compressions that saved Mike’s life.
“Without that,” she said through tears, “my husband would not be here today.”
“I just love him,” she said of Higgins. “I’m so happy he came into our lives when he did.”
Heslam: Cop brings man back from dead, saves wedding