Tailgaters save Texans fan whose heart stopped at Sunday's game

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Some Texans tailgaters are being hailed as heroes after saving a man's life prior to last weekend's game.

On Sunday, Texans fan Gary Reimers suffered cardiac arrest in a Texans tailgating lot. Medical professionals, including a registered nurse and paramedic, were tailgating nearby when Reimers collapsed.

Leslie Bennett, who is a nurse, said her husband told her someone needed help.

"There was a gentleman on his side, and he was breathing," Bennett recalled. "He had a pulse."

In a matter of moments, the pulse was gone. That's when paramedic Darrell Fales jumped in to help.

"It's a team effort," Fales said. "We do this to try to help and save people. You have to realize you can't save all people but when you do, it's a good feeling."

By the time Reimers was rushed away in an ambulance, he had a pulse.

"I just think it's my job," Bennett explained. "I was in the right place at the right time."

While they saved his life, they weren't able to save Reimers' jersey. In order to perform CPR, they had to cut apart his J.J. Watt jersey.

"Those things aren't cheap," Fales said. "They're like $150. I'll be more than happy to get him another one. I think they said if we had to, we'll take up a collection."

ABC 13 spoke to Reimers' family. They said he's recovering and suffered no brain damage.

They believe he could be out of the hospital by the end of the week. They credit the feat to the tailgating strangers who quickly performed CPR.

Reimers hasn't met the people who performed CPR, but that is bound to happen. Both Reimers and his heroes want to meet at another Texans game, just one he'll be able to enjoy.

"I'd like to shake his hand, or give him a hug and tell him I'm sorry for cutting his jersey," Fales said. "I'm glad he's still here with us and able to go to more Texans games."
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