SLCH Staffer Named AHA Heart Walk Honoree

SLCH Staffer Named AHA Heart Walk Honoree

Newburgh, NY -- On September 30, 2015 Luciano "Luch" Licursi arrived to work at St. Luke's Cornwall Hospital like any other day. The week had been particularly busy, but nothing out of the ordinary. As the afternoon went on he started to feel a little unusual; sweating, tightening of the chest, and overall discomfort. He knew this feeling all too well, having had a heart attack in 2004 at the age of 39, that resulted in 50% loss of heart functionality.

Being the dedicated employee that he is, Luch plugged away through the afternoon, all the while thinking in the back of his head, "I better go home soon and rest." 

Around 2:30p.m. one of his colleagues noticed that he wasn't looking like himself. It was then that Luch realized he needed to do something. Luch walked down to SLCH's Cardiac Catheterization Lab, where he saw Beverly Keefer, Director of Cardiovascular Services. Bev could tell right away that this was more than just a stressful day. She brought Luch to the Emergency Room to confirm what they both knew was true: he was having another heart attack.

"I told Bev, 'Please tell my kids I love them.' I thought to myself, this is it."

Several nurses and staff were by Luch's side through it all. Holding his hand, reassuring him that he was going to be OK.

"I was surrounded by so many people. I felt so safe."

Within minutes, Dr. Shah, an SLCH cardiologist was performing a lifesaving emergency Angioplasty.

Luch spent four days in the Intensive Care Unit, surrounded by family, friends and coworkers.

"I woke up at 4 a.m. to one of my colleagues standing at my bedside. The outpouring of love and support was incredible. "I'm blessed to be surrounded by so many good people. They've got a friend in me for life."

Five months later, Luch is feeling much more like himself. He's back to work full time and enjoying time with his wife and four children.