The Suffolk County police officer who helped save a newborn in Mount Sinai last year has become the baby’s godfather, police said.
Jane Pappalardo went into labor Aug. 22 and delivered her son, Bryce, on the family’s kitchen floor. But the umbilical cord was wrapped around Bryce’s neck and the boy wasn’t breathing. Mike Pappalardo, Bryce’s father, said even after he removed the umbilical cord, the baby still wouldn’t breathe.
Sixth Precinct Officer Jon-Erik Negron was on the scene and quickly used a plastic syringe he found in the kitchen to clear the fluid from Bryce’s airway, allowing the boy to take his first breath, police said.
“It was scary, but Jon came in and he was calm and knew what to do,” said Mike Pappalardo, who turns 39 on Tuesday. “It made all the difference.”
The close call bonded Negron to the family, and they’ve remained close since, said Negron, 33.
When it came time for the parents to choose a godfather for Bryce, Mike Pappalardo said Negron was an easy choice.
“He’s been there for Bryce since his first breath,” he said. “We’re really lucky to have Jon in our lives.”
The christening was held June 23 at Infant Jesus Roman Catholic Church in Port Jefferson. And as Negron held the normally fussy baby in his arms, Bryce remained calm and a big smile spread across his face, Mike Pappalardo said. After the service, the officer gave his new godson some toys and a silver pendant with his badge number on it.
“This is probably the most meaningful thing that will happen to me on this job and it exceeded all expectations,” Negron said.