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Jack Pintchik Medal

March 20, 1998, 1447 hours
1100 Grand Concourse, the Bronx

EMT-D Rafal Proban

EMT-D George Gatt

Rafal Proban

Rafal Proban was appointed to EMS on January 27, 1997, and since has resigned. He was assigned to EMS Battalion 26. He attended Long Island University. He resides in Brooklyn with his wife, Ildie.

George Gatt

George Gatt was appointed to EMS on July 22, 1996. Assigned to EMS Battalion 26. He resides in the Bronx.

At 2:47 p.m. on March 20, 1998, EMT-Ds George Gatt and Rafal Proban received a call from EMS dispatch to respond to 1100 Grand Concourse in the Bronx. Although they knew to expect an emotionally disturbed patient, they did not know just what kind of scene awaited them. Upon entry into the apartment, the two emergency responders encountered a 35-year-old man sitting on a chair, bleeding from a self-inflicted puncture wound to his arm. When the team attempted to approach the man to tend to his wound, he became extremely agitated and physically violent. He swung his wounded arm around, splattering his blood onto everything and everyone. With the exception of the EMT-Ds, all of the people in the room moved back to avoid the violently flailing man. EMT-Ds Gatt and Proban continued to do what they were trained to do; that is, attempt to aid the injured man. In a split second, the man leaped up, ran to the window and jumped out. With equally rapid speed, EMT-D Gatt responded, rushing after the man and catching him by the leg. Somehow, EMT-D Gatt was able to grab hold of the man’s belt, further securing his grip, but simultaneously threatening his balance. EMT-D Proban, aware that the safety of his partner was in jeopardy, quickly reached out and grabbed him. This action prevented EMT-D Gatt from quite possibly being dragged out the window by the weight of the dangling, wildly struggling man. After several tenuous moments, EMT-Ds Gatt and Proban, working in tandem, were able to pull the man back into the room. The police personnel on-scene managed to restrain the man and the two EMT-Ds then were able to transport him to the hospital. Thanks to the quick-thinking actions of EMT-Ds Gatt and Proban, a loss of life was prevented and a desperate man was given the care that he needed. For their actions, EMT-Ds Gatt and Proban are awarded the Jack Pintchik Medal for 1998.--LK

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