MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, V.A. – Cpl. Chase Portello was enjoying lunch, at a restaurant in Quantico, when he witnessed a fellow service member visibly expressing severe health complications. Without hesitation, Portello sprang into action and selflessly rushed to the man and, with the help of an off-duty physician, began to assess the patient.
“The only thing that went through my mind was, there’s a Marine that needs help,” said Portello. “I know I can, so I got up and helped.”
Assessing the patient, they found that the patient was not breathing, had a dangerously faint pulse, and then no pulse. The patient was U.S. Marine Corps Colonel Carlos Urbina, the director of Command Element Information Division, Combat Development and Integration.
“I just went straight into my training,” said Portello. “Every step was deliberate, the way we did it, the doctor and I.”
After lowering the patient onto the ground, Portello and the doctor immediately started to perform CPR, while also directing two onlookers to call Emergency Services and find an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED).
First responders arrived then administered their AED to the patient. Portello continued to assist the paramedics, as Urbina’s health was not improving. The first responders transported Urbina to a nearby emergency room where he recovered to a stable condition.
Cpl. Chase Portello, a noncommissioned officer with Marine Helicopter Squadron One, received the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal November 14, 2022 for his heroic actions. The Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal is the highest non-combat award for heroism awarded to members of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps.
The Marine who pinned the award on Portello was none other than the Marine whose life he saved.
“I have no recollection of approximately 30 minutes,” said Urbina. “I’ve spent the last month or so speaking with first responders and other witnesses that were there to piece it together.”
Urbina took multiple visits to the firehouse to thank the first responders and one of them mentioned that Cpl Portello started CPR before the first responders arrived.
The grateful Colonel presented Portello his award on December 16, 2022 stating, “I was unconscious when he met me, but what I do know about him is that when I was in a situation when my life depended on his hands, without me even knowing him, he acted, so that to me speaks to the brotherhood of a Marine.”
“The award is really nice and I’m very grateful for the command to give it to me,” stated Portello, “but the major award is getting to meet the person that I got to save and I think that’s the best part.”
|Date Posted:||12.30.2022 15:26|
|Location:||QUANTICO, VA, US|
|Hometown:||FORT MILL, SC, US|
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