February 7, 2023 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Two Santa Monica Recreation Employees Named Hometown Heroes by the Red Cross for Life Saving Efforts

Jose Barron and Anthony Diaz honored for saving police officer having cardiac arrest

By Dolores Quintana

The American Red Cross of the Los Angeles Region held their Hometown Heroes Ceremony on May 19 at the Carson Community Center in Carson, California as reported by Culver City News. Of the twelve honorees, two were from the Westside area. 

Each year this annual event honors community members who have demonstrated heroism through extraordinary acts of courage and humanitarian service and embody the spirit and mission of the American Red Cross through five lines of service: Disaster Relief, Blood Services, Service to the Armed Forces, Training Service and International Service.

“Our one-of-a-kind Heroes events are some of the best known and most beloved Red Cross events in the country. There is not a dry eye in the house as we celebrate incredible stories of strength, compassion, and heroism. These stories often remain untold until they are presented at our event, giving you the unique chance to discover never-before-heard stories and meet local heroes. This event is sponsored by many of the region’s leading philanthropic and corporate entities, raising critical funds to support the vital mission of the Red Cross,” the organization says about the event. 

Those two Westside heroes are Jose Barron and Anthony Diaz, who are employees of the Santa Monica Community Recreation Division. They saw a police officer from the Santa Monica Police Department, who was off duty at the time, have a cardiac arrest in the gym at Memorial Park. After calling 9-1-1, they sprang into action while being advised by 9-1-1 dispatcher Joanna Worgen. They began to perform CPR in the most important minutes after the cardiac event and used a defibrillator. When paramedics arrived, the officer wasn’t conscious but was breathing and had a pulse. The paramedics were able to transport him to the hospital and he recovered and was released after a week. 

Barron and Diaz were also awarded the Santa Monica Police Department’s Citizens Award. 

“Jose Barron and Anthony Diaz, your quick instinctive reaction and focused attention made a difference and ensured the wellbeing of the SMPD employee.  On behalf of the women and men of the  Santa Monica Police Department, I do hereby commend you both, and extend our sincere gratitude and appreciation for your heroic actions and unwavering decision to help someone in need,” SMPD Chief Ramon Batista said in the wake of the event.

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