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Umpire Jim Joyce Saves Woman’s Life Before Hitting the Mound… No Big Deal

Jim Joyce
Doug Pensinger, Getty Images

This isn’t the first time baseball umpire Jim Joyce has been in the news. Two years ago, a famously blown call that cost Detroit’s Armando Galarraga a perfect game put him in the headlines. This week, however, he’s better known as the hero who saved the life of a woman with a heart problem.

Jayne Powers, a food service worker at the Arizona Diamondbacks’ Chase Field, collapsed on Monday before the team’s game against the Florida Marlins. Joyce happened to be walking by when she did. After ruling out a seizure as the cause of collapse, the 56-year-old began performing CPR. Marlins bullpen catcher Jeff Urgelles, a former paramedic, was called to the scene to help tend to the fallen woman. Together the two kept her alive until the paramedics arrived.

Powers was taken to the hospital, where she was given a pacemaker. By Tuesday she was already feeling well enough for an emotional reunion with Joyce.

“I knew something was wrong,” Joyce explained. “And I knew if something wasn’t done, this lady could actually die in front of me. It was more instinct than anything else.”

After Joyce missed the call at first base that cost Galarraga his rare perfect game in 2010, he tearfully apologized to the pitcher. His quick, heartfelt reaction to his blunder is often used as an example of how one should deal with a mistake. In fact, Joyce and Galarraga even co-authored a book together called ‘Nobody’s Perfect: Two Men, One Call, and a Game for Baseball History.’

Today, Joyce can also be used as an example as to why it’s always good to know CPR.

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