A group of medics were invited to Shmuel Kovetzik’s recent bar mitzvah party in Kfar Chabad, close to Tel Aviv, whose life they had rescued at birth.
It was a touching reunion.
It was only natural for us to invite them to join us in celebrating Shmuel’s bar mitzvah because of the traumatic and challenging event that, by God’s grace, resulted in a visible miracle.
“Since then, we have been in contact with the [Magen David Adom] team; we remember them every birthday,” said Shmuel’s father, Shneor.
For Jewish men, a bar mitzvah marks their completion of puberty at the age of 13. At age 12, a woman celebrates her bat mitzvah.
MDA is a leading nationwide provider of ambulance, blood bank, and emergency medical services.
On September 11, 2010, an urgent call about a woman going into labor at her Kfar Chabad house was received by its dispatch center.
A complicated and life-threatening situation was presented to the responding team, which included paramedic Icho Leibovitz, doctors Shnior Tsik and Oren Roni, and paramedic student Mirit Halfon.
The newborn was in the breech position, which meant that it would emerge feet first. As Shmuel was delivered without a pulse and unresponsive, the team’s efforts to restart his heart for the next 10 minutes were terrifying.
Leibovitz remembered, “It was the first time in my career that I performed CPR on a baby, just a few minutes old.
“At that time, all I could think about was how to work as professionally as possible to save his life, and to my delight, the difficult memory blends with the most happy occasions and the most momentous family milestones,” he continued.
The infant was brought to the hospital after being revived. The MDA team was asked to commemorate the circumcision, during which infant boys are given their names, months after the baby was delivered and released.
“I recall the incident as it is today.
It took place just before Rosh Hashanah, and giving birth was exceedingly challenging. We struggled to preserve Shmuel’s life, and it was a huge miracle that we were successful, said Tsik, a resident of Kfar Chabad and the first medical professional to reach the home that fateful day.
Every time I see him and his family on the street, I think back to the story and am happy all over again, he continued. “His birth was, to this day, one of my most complex and memorable events at MDA.
“We were thrilled and overjoyed to see the angels in white again,” Shneor Kovetzik said. “They came to us today calm and relaxed, with a grin on their cheeks, and without medical equipment.
I am grateful to the MDA and the Holy One, blessed be He, for saving our child’s life, and I am eagerly anticipating the following [joyous event] so that we can continue to rejoice together in the future.