Hershi Pfeiffer alive because of ‘Brooklyn heroes’

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Borough President Eric Adams, third from right, paid tribute on Monday to FDNY EMT Jenelle Rivera, construction manager Marcell Alberti, and Lutheran Medical Center’s Dr. Enrico Ascher for helping to save the life of Hershi Pfeiffer, center with family. Photos by Mary Frost

Borough President Eric Adams paid tribute on Monday to three Brooklyn heroes for helping to save the life of a man stabbed by an employee on Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights on September 22.

Adriy Komynar, a disgruntled construction worker, allegedly stabbed manager Hershi Pfeiffer, 36, several times, including once in the neck, leaving the father of six bleeding profusely on the street.

At an emotional ceremony in Borough Hall attended by Pfeiffer and his family and friends, Adams honored as Brooklyn’s “Heroes of the Month” FDNY EMT Jenelle Rivera, who performed the emergency first aid that controlled the bleeding; construction manager Marcell Alberti, who helped chase the perpetrator while dialing 911; and Dr. Enrico Ascher, who performed surgery on Pfeiffer at Lutheran Medical Center.

“It’s good to pause a moment and acknowledge the good deeds and good people who overwhelmingly make up the borough of Brooklyn. They are Brooklyn’s heroes,” Adams said.

Hershi Pfeiffer. Photo by Mary Frost

Hershi Pfeiffer. Photo by Mary Frost

Rivera, an EMT with ten years experience, just happened to be in the neighborhood. When she heard the commotion, she rushed to the scene of the stabbing and immediately applied direct pressure to Pfeiffer’s gaping neck wound.

“When I realized he was on the ground and bleeding out . . . with the amount of blood that was on the street at that time, no one should have lived through that. I knew if I didn’t do everything I could, he would have died,” she said.

Rivera told the Brooklyn Eagle that she had been concerned because Long Island College Hospital had just closed. “The next closest hospital was further out,” she said. “I’m just grateful that the ambulance crew, the people, the bystanders, the doctor all came together to save his life.”

Ms. Rivera did not even have gloves, but that did not deter her. “He’s someone’s brother, he’s someone’s husband, he’s someone’s father,” she said.

Construction manager Marcell Alberti, who chased the perpetrator up Montague Street, modestly told the Borough Hall assembly, “Everybody can be a force for good, no matter how small or great the gesture.”

Dr. Enrico Ascher, who performed surgery on Pfeiffer, said, “Basically, I was just doing my job. If not for the staff, the surgeons, the residents, I would not be here today. I just happen to be the guy getting the citation.”

Pfeiffer’s daughter Gitty thanked the honorees. “You were all sent by G-d to save my father.”

She also thanked her dad. “I thank my father for being strong and fighting for his life.”

Rabbi Eliezer Feuer said it was a miracle that Pfeiffer was alive.

“I did not expect the end to be the end we have today. This man lost most of the blood in his body,” Feuer said.

“Every piece is a piece of the puzzle. That Jenelle should happen to be in that place. That Marcell did not flinch, he put his hand on Hershi’s hand. Dr. Ascher – G-d’s hand was guiding him that day.”

Following the stabbing, Gowanus resident Joseph Washington subdued Komynar and disarmed him. Komynar is being charged with attempted murder.

Other attendees at the Borough Hall ceremony included FDNY Chief of EMS Abdo Nahmod, FDNY Assistant Chief of EMS Jerry Gombo, FDNY EMS Division 3 Commander Robert Hannafey and FDNY EMS Station 35 Captain Cheryl Middleton.

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