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HEROES: 'Stars Align' After Driver Suffers Medical Emergency, Hits Historic Bergen County Home

A tow truck removes the Jeep from the property of  the Romeyn-Oldis-Brinkerhoff House as one of the heroes, Maywood Police Officer Keion Best, directs traffic.
A tow truck removes the Jeep from the property of the Romeyn-Oldis-Brinkerhoff House as one of the heroes, Maywood Police Officer Keion Best, directs traffic. Photo Credit: Jerry DeMarco

A Maywood driver whose Jeep hit a centuries-old borough home after he suffered a medical emergency had good fortune -- and a bunch of angels -- on his side.

The 58-year-old motorist was "driving normally" when he was suddenly incapacitated while making a left from East Central Avenue onto Maywood Avenue around 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 20, Police Chief Terence R. Kenny said.

The driver's Jeep Gladiator rolled into the Romeyn-Oldis-Brinkerhoff House, a sandstone Colonial built in the late 1700s.

As it turned out, retired Maywood Police Chief David Pegg -- who's still a borough firefighter -- was driving by, Kenny said. Officers Timothy Cook and Keion Best were also instantly at the scene, he said.

The responders got the driver out of his vehicle when they were joined by Lt. Derek Smith and two smoke eaters from a nearby firehouse -- Assistant Maywood Fire Chief John Gargagliano and Firefighter Ed Stelter, who's also a Port Authority police officer, the chief said.

"They all chipped in to try and revive him," Kenny said.

Hackensack University Medical Center paramedics and a BLS unit arrived and a pulse was regained, the chief said.

The driver later regained consciousness at HUMC, he said.

Sources told Daily Voice the man was alert and talking.

"There was some minor damage to the residence, which was checked by a building inspector and deemed safe," Kenny said.

Talk about luck.

"Chief Pegg was on the way to the firehouse and the firefighters were already at their building when the call for help went out," Kenny said.

"The close vicinity of the hospital and quick response from EMS from HUMC was the game changer," he said. "The victim could not have had his stars lined up any better with the professionals who were nearby.

"We are hopeful for a positive recovery."

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