Tragedy Inspires a Mission to Save Lives
On November 18, 2015 Pepi Dragotta, a 39 year old husband and father of three, suffered from sudden cardiac arrest while playing a game of soccer with his sons team. Because of quick action taken by other parents at the field, and emergency responders only minutes away, Pepi survived this tragic event. He underwent a 6 bypass surgery at Cooper Hospital in Camden, NJ and has made a complete and full recovery.
Immediate CPR and the use of an AED is what ultimately saved Pepi’s life. There was not an AED onsite at the sports complex, and that realization moved Pepi to provide lifesaving equipment and CPR training at sports fields across Southern New Jersey. That was the spark to ignite this cause…this is how Heroes was born.
Sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death in the United States. When bystanders intervene by giving CPR and using automated external defibrillators (AEDs) before EMS arrives, 4 out of 10 victims survive.
The Heroes Foundation NJ consists of board members who are Pepi's personal heroes, and those who quickly reacted and started CPR right away before emergency responders arrival.
These people are:
Doug & Deanna Volovar
Since Heroes Foundation NJ inception in 2016, we have been able to donate more than 70 AED's to deserving non-profits as well as fund $13,000 in scholarships to students perusing a career int he medical field.
Heroes also has a board of trustee whose members are committed to the cause, and work tirelessly to fundraise and promote awareness.
**Pictured above is Founder Pepi Dragotta and his son Hunter, with 11 AEDs purchased in 2016 from our partners at Jersey Fire & Safety Products, LLC of Vineland, NJ.