Every day, the men and women who work as first responders do incredible things that they are never recognized for.
But when firefighters and EMTs from Pasco County, Florida went above and beyond the call of duty, one woman took notice.
Now she’s sharing her story, hoping to honor the men who helped her family in their time of need.
On Saturday, Greg Work from Hudson, Florida suffered a massive heart attack.
Work’s wife, Melissa, asked friends and family to pray for her husband as he underwent emergency open heart surgery.
“My Babe isn’t supposed to be here right now. But God saved His life,” she shared on Facebook.
Doctors said that if Melissa waited a few more minutes to dial 911, Greg might have died on the table.
“His whole right coronary artery was completely clogged,” she said.
“They kept telling me that I saved his life. I still can’t comprehend it.”
While Melissa was at the hospital with her husband, her brother-in-law was dealing with another problem: four pallets of sod sitting on the Works’ lawn.
“Before my husband had his massive heart attack, he was working on the sod with my amazing brother-in-law, ” Melissa explained.
“That is what triggered and set it off.”
The couple were facing a deadline to fix their yard before they faced a fine from their homeowner’s association.
While he should have been resting, Greg kept worrying about the sod and the upcoming deadline.
“While he was having his heart attack, literally in and out of consciousness, he kept begging me to figure out the sod and have it put down because he didn’t want it to go to waste and die,” Melissa remembered.
“It’s ALL he kept asking about literally during a massive heart attack.”
Greg’s brother volunteered to stay up all night laying sod, but then heard trucks coming down the road.
“He turned around and saw the fire truck and ambulance had come back,” Melissa said. “He was confused and thought they were coming to check on him.”
“Before he knows it, seven firefighters and EMT’s jumped out, put on gloves and said they came back because they knew [we were] in serious trouble and they wanted to lay the new sod so it didn’t die.”
In a viral Facebook post, Melissa thanked the thoughtful emergency workers who fixed her lawn.
“They knew he wouldn’t be able to do any work for weeks so they came back,” she said.
“They saved his life, dropped him off and then cared enough to save our GRASS!”
The act was especially meaningful because the rescue workers didn’t know about the fine, or the fact that Greg had pawned his favorite gun to buy the sod.
Both Melissa and Greg say the act of kindness brought tears to their eyes.
“They simply saw someone in need, something in need and did this for us. This wasn’t in their job description.”
Now, Melissa wants these everyday heroes to get recognized for their work. But the fire department says these men were “just doing their job.”
There’s one more twist in this simple story, and it’s a doozy.
The Works are saving up for a big expense next month: a trip to Tampa for Melissa’s bone marrow transplant.
The mother of two has lived with bone marrow failure disease for more than a decade, along with anemia and an immune deficiency condition.
Her treatment involves painful monthly treatments, including plenty of injections.
Melissa is finally scheduled to get a life-saving transplant from her older sister, but will need to spend three months recovering in Tampa.
Because of her weakened immune system, Melissa will need to pay for expensive isolation housing.
She also won’t be able to see her children in person for months, and can’t return to work for two years.
To cover the costs of the trip and other expenses, the Works set up a GoFundMe page.
“I am excited to see what God does with my story and through this scary and uncertain time,” Melissa wrote about the procedure.
“I’m ready to fight and to win.”