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April 12, 2017

An American Airlines employee was honored at a ceremony on Tuesday after he saved two lives in one day.

On January 22, Christofer Hatcu — an American Airlines customer service manager — was finishing his shift at Charlotte Douglas International Airport when he noticed a passenger lying on the ground. The former volunteer firefighter identified the man was having a heart attack, and began performing CPR.

A few minutes after Hatcu resuscitated the man, another passenger had a heart attack a few gates down. Paramedics asked Hatcu to assist in that emergency, too. EMTs said that neither passenger would have survived if Hatcu had not been there to provide immediate assistance.

“I guess it's just, I was in the right place at the right time,” Hatcu told local news station Fox 46.

Gonnelli was transported to the hospital following his heart attack. He was in a coma for four days but once he woke up, he nominated Hatcu for American Airlines’ Real American Hero award.

“I suffered a massive heart attack at the gate and was on the ground unresponsive. Chris immediately went into action performing CPR and continued until an airport rescue crew arrived,” Gonnelli wrote in his nomination. “Chris saved my life and I would not be writing this if it were not for him.”

Hatcu was presented with an American Airlines Real Hero cape and a check for $1,000 at a ceremony at the airport.

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