Fast action by Montclair police saves baby boy who stopped breathing

A Montclair family and three law enforcement officers are forever connected after the quick action of township police revived a six-day-old baby boy who had stopped breathing earlier this year.

Montclair Police Officer Kevin Ortiz has been hailed as a hero for saving the infant’s life back on October 14.

According to Montclair Police Lt. Terence Turner, the infant’s panic-stricken parents, Jorkell Echeverria and Lynette Rente, called 911 around 9:45 p.m. when their baby, Diego’s airway was blocked.

Officers arrived at the Nushuane Road home within minutes of the call, and one of them, Ortiz, took hold of the infant, determined that his airway was obstructed, flipped Diego over and began patting him sharply on the back.

Officers Matthew Dobrowolski and Sean Verbist arrived with Ortiz, within minutes of the dispatcher relaying the emergency call, according to an account of the incident released by police.

After 10 to 15 pats, Diego vomited the obstruction and began crying. Dobrowolski and Verbist assisted by setting up an oxygen tank and supplying it to the infant, while Ortiz held him and keep him alert.

Lynette was breastfeeding her son when he began to choke and stopped breathing, according to a police report. She called 911 when Diego’s pale face turned dark.

After the emergency care, Diego’s coloring began to return to normal, police said.

A week after saving their newborn infant, whose breathing was obstructed while feeding, Montclair police officer Kevin Ortiz paid a visit to Lynette Rente, Jorkell Echeverria and their child Diego, who got a teddy bear from the hero who saved his life.

Police Chief Todd M. Conforti said he, “could not be more proud of the work done by our officers every day.”

“‘Thanks’ is never asked for or even expected,” Conforti said. “We have a job to do for the people of Montclair. We will always strive to be our best. We appreciate this beautiful family reaching out as these officers did a great thing that evening. We are blessed to be able to do what we do.”

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