Senator Fuschillo Presents Liberty Medal to Hero Calhoun High School Student

Charles J. Fuschillo Jr.

February 18, 2011

Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) today presented the New York State Senate Liberty Medal to Calhoun High School senior Colleen Oggeri for heroically saving her father’s life after he fell victim to sudden cardiac arrest. Senator Fuschillo presented the Liberty Medal to Colleen at Calhoun High School, surrounded by her family, teachers, and fellow students.

“Colleen’s quick thinking helped save her father’s life and prevent a tragedy. She remained calm and acted swiftly in a situation that could be very frightening and emotional for a young teenager to handle. She is a true hero and I am pleased to present her with this honor,” said Senator Fuschillo.

“I would like to commend Colleen Oggeri for her bravery in savings her father’s life. Her quick thinking and jump to action in administering CPR was the key to keeping her father alive. This underscores the importance of CPR education. Colleen is indeed a role model for all young people,” said Assemblyman David McDonough (R-North Merrick).

Colleen’s father, Doug Oggeri suffered a heart attack and collapsed while shoveling snow at the family’s home in Merrick on February 3rd. Colleen immediately administered CPR while her mother, Linda, called 911. Doctors later said that Mr. Oggeri had 90 percent blockage in two of his three arteries and would not have survived if Colleen had not acted so quickly in performing CPR.       

Colleen, who plans to study nursing in college next fall, learned CPR three years ago through the Merrick Police Athletic League. Officer Ed Serrao of the Merrick/North Merrick PAL attended the ceremony to recognize Colleen’s actions.

Created in 2000, the New York State Senate Liberty Medal is one of thehighest civilian honors that a New Yorker can receive. Similar to the national Congressional Gold Medal, the award is given to individuals who have merited special commendation for exceptional, heroic, or humanitarian acts and achievements on behalf oftheir fellow New Yorkers.

Senator Fuschillo is pictured as he presents the Senate Liberty Medal and a companion certificate to Colleen Oggeri, while her parents, Doug and Linda Oggeri, and Officer Ed Serrao of the Merrick PAL look on.