It took a team effort last December for a Nassau police officer and two paramedics to breathe life back into a premature newborn girl.
Six months later, the Nassau County Legislature recognized Officer Michael Siarkowicz and paramedics Matthew Beshlian and Ryan Makovy with "Cop of the Month" honors in Mineola.
"Day in and day out, our police officers and AMTs are out there doing great deeds like this all the time that don't become as newsworthy," said James Carver, president of the Nassau Police Benevolent Association, at the ceremony.
The three friends saved the infant's life after responding to a 911 call on a December night from a woman in labor three months early.
Makovy, 32, was first on the scene. He saw that the woman had just given birth. The infant had stopped breathing and had only a faint heartbeat.
Makovy started CPR and cut the umbilical cord. But the ordeal wasn't over.
"The mother was pregnant with twins," Makovy said . ". . . So, as upset as she was about the first baby, I kind of had to get her focused so she could keep the second baby healthy until we could get her to the hospital."
His colleagues soon arrived.
Siarkowicz, 32, a former Nassau paramedic, said his training kicked in.
"You just go into automatic and you do what you have to do," Siarkowicz said after the ceremony. "We're best friends outside of this job."
They loaded the mother and infant into an ambulance, and Siarkowicz and Beshlian performed CPR on the infant as Makovy made the three-minute drive to Winthrop-University Hospital. Nassau officials did not provide the woman's name or address, citing privacy concerns, but said she lived in an area patrolled by the Third Precinct in Williston Park.
At the hospital, the newborn was breathing and her heartbeat recovered. The mother gave birth to the second of the twins, a boy, at the hospital. Both infants survived.
"The whole call was challenging," said Beshlian, 30. "And without Officer Siarkowicz and AMT Makovy it would have gone a lot differently."