Twin sisters from Massachusetts help save unresponsive woman during flight to Florida

WAYLAND, Mass. — Twin sisters from Massachusetts -- one a firefighter and paramedic, the other a nurse -- helped save a woman’s life after she became unresponsive during a flight from Boston to southwest Florida.

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Lindsay Byrne, a paramedic with the Wayland Fire Department, and her sister, Nicole Kelly, a traveling nurse who also works at Lahey Hospital & Medical Center in Burlington, were on a Jet Blue Flight from Boston to Fort Myers on Aug. 1 when a woman was discovered unresponsive in a lavatory on their aircraft,’ the Wayland Fire Department wrote in a Facebook post on Saturday.

When flight attendants asked if any passengers had medical backgrounds, the 28-year-old sisters joined a Florida firefighter to assist the woman, WFXT-TV reported.

“It was just an instinct to run to the front. I wasn’t nervous, just didn’t know what to expect,” Kelly told the television station. “I guess the most stressful part of it was being on the plane and having limited resources, but thankfully it all worked out, and hopefully she’s OK today.”

According to Wayland Fire Department, the woman had a faint pulse and was having difficulty breathing. The woman’s skin was grayish-blue, suggesting that she was having a diabetic emergency.

Byrne, who has been with the fire department since 2018, her sister and the Florida firefighter sat the woman upright to allow her to breathe and gave her packets of sugar.

The trio remained with the woman until the aircraft landed at Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers, WFXT reported. The woman was then taken to an area hospital by ambulance, according to the television station.

“Incidents like these are what first responders and medical professionals train for. Seeing this training and professionalism kick into action beyond our small community and in an environment with limited resources is a proud moment for the department that made a difference in someone’s life,” Wayland Fire Chief Neil McPherson said in a statement. “I commend Lindsay and Nicole for working together and utilizing both of their unique skill sets to take this swift, lifesaving action while flying aboard an aircraft.”

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