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Muslim paramedic recalls at Jewish wedding how he saved bride from death

It is not unusual for a wedding to leave many of the guests in tears. However, a wedding in Israel last week did not leave a dry eye in the house for a very special reason.

Muawiya Kabha, a Muslim paramedic in a response unit of United Hatzalah, made a special appearance at the wedding of Shahar Kugelmas and Nir David, and recounted to the guests present how in April 2009, he had arrived at the scene of a car crash to find Shahar dead.

The car that Shahar was a passenger in had crashed into a tree at Sirkin Junction, near Petah Tikva.

“When I arrived there after two minutes, the doctor told me ‘this injured girl, don’t touch her. I have already declared her dead. Let’s treat the driver,'” Kabha recalled through the microphone.

“I told him okay you treat the driver and I stayed treating Shahar.”

“When I got to Shahar, she was in cardiac arrest. And per protocol, the doctor was right, we needed to declare the death. But what I felt from above is that I still need to try and save her,” Kabha said to applause from the wedding guests.

Kabha explained how he continued CPR on Shahar for about 40 minutes whilst she was still stuck in the car before accompanying her on the way to the hospital.

“We continued CPR on the way to the hospital and at the entrance to the hospital she had a heartbeat. Her heart started to beat. I want to tell you that when I returned home that night I didn’t have a hope,” Kabha recalled. “I put my head on the pillow and thought the Angel of Death might have beaten me. But I knew that I did everything I could to try and save her.

“In the end, I must have done what I needed to do, because look, Shahar is with us.”

Shahar’s new husband Nir David told Ynet, “Without Muawiya, the wedding yesterday would never have taken place. Shahar had no idea he was going to speak at the wedding ceremony.”

He explained that Kabha had been invited as a guest of the bride’s father, Yitzhak.

Kabha finished his short speech at the wedding by thanking Shahar and saying “People ask me all the time, how do you keep going after all the death you see in your work. The answer is here, Shahar. I am able to continue my work because of you. Because I saved your body. But you saved my soul. Every time I remember calls that I have been to, I remember you and your smile. Thank you, thank you. Mazal Tov. I love you both.”

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