Tony Aldapa Biography — Wiki
Tony Aldapa was one of the passengers on board who helped perform CPR on the man. Panicked passengers sitting in various parts of the crowded cabin took photos as the drama unfolded before them which saw paramedics attempt to revive the passenger who was pronounced dead shortly after an emergency landing in New Orleans.
Medics who were allowed on board once the plane had landed attempted to save him while his wife revealed within earshot of other travelers that her husband had been showing symptoms of COVID-19 for the past week, having lost his sense of taste and smell.
What happened during the United Airlines flight?
In a terrifying ordeal for nearby passengers, the man was seen on the plane shaking and sweating and having a hard time breathing even before the flight took off. Once in the air, his condition deteriorated rapidly and the captain made the decision to perform an emergency landing in order for the man to receive medical attention.
Just over an hour into the flight, the passenger who was sitting in seat 28D stopped breathing.
The crew asked if there were any doctors on board and a number of people got up to help.
Some have detailed how during CPR, his bones could be heard to crack as chest compressions were carried out before he started turning blue.
Tony Aldapa was one of the passengers on board who helped perform CPR on the man
‘I got up out of my seat, let them know “Hey I know CPR” and asked, “Do you need some extra help?” I can tap in and help with chest compressions. That’s how it all started.
‘By the point that I got there to the point where the fire department got on board, it was at least 45 minutes,’ Tony Aldapa explained.
‘There was no mouth-to-mouth at all. We were doing chest compressions and they had him on the oxygen mask from the plane, then once we had a medical bag that is kept onboard we used an Ambu-bag which is a bag that you squeeze to give breaths, that’s what we used for breathing,’ he detailed.
— E4ZZ8M (@E4ZZ8M) December 20, 2020
Tony Aldapa posts on Twitter
On Saturday night, on Twitter, Tony Aldapa went into further details as to why he decided to get involved and what happened after the man had been removed from the aircraft.
‘By now most of you know I was on the United flight that has been in the news. I made the decision to attempt to save the passenger’s life and along with 2 others performed CPR for close to an hour until we landed. And continued to help the firefighters when they came on board.
‘I knew the risks involved in performing CPR on someone that potentially has COVID but I made the choice to do so anyway. I spoke with the passenger’s wife about his medical history and she never mentioned he was positive, she said he was scheduled to have a test done in LA.
‘I spent the remainder of the flight covered in my own sweat and in that man’s urine. I have since become symptomatic myself and am awaiting the results of my second test. I have not been contacted by the airline or by CDC as of this time.
‘Looking back I would not change my actions, but I may have stepped up earlier. Knowing I had the knowledge, training and experience to help out, I could not have sat idly by and watched someone die.’
Tony Aldapa told DailyMail.com that despite the photographs snapped by other travelers, there was no sense of chaos in the cabin at any point.
‘There was no chaos on board. The photos look like it but that’s because there were a lot of people in one spot in a small space. Just like when boarding a flight, it’s organized but a photo will make it look like a mob. The flight crew had everything under control to the best of their ability and any passenger that was not actively helping was sitting calmly in their seats. I’ve been in chaotic situations before and that was absolutely not the case. It definitely could have been, but the flight crew did an amazing job.’
What we know so far
While talking to EMTs in New Orleans, the man’s wife admitted that her husband had tested positive for coronavirus meaning he likely lied when checking in for the flight.
In a statement to DailyMail.com United Airlines has confirmed that it was contacted by the CDC, and was informed that the man did have coronavirus.