‘She’s my guardian angel’: DoorDasher saves Massachusetts woman’s life while delivering pizza

May 2, 2022, 10:16 AM | Updated: Jun 8, 2022, 3:15 pm
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 04: A Doordash sticker is seen on a window at Mallenche Mexican Grill...
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 04: A Doordash sticker is seen on a window at Mallenche Mexican Grill in the Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn on December 04, 2020 in New York City. Food delivery startup DoorDash Inc is expected to raise its U.S. initial public offering up to $3.14 billion. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

(CNN) — When a Massachusetts woman ordered a pizza on a routine Friday evening, she had no idea the quick thinking and kindness of her delivery driver would change her life that night.

Caryn Hebert Sullivan put in the call for a late dinner on February 11, and DoorDash driver Sophia Furtado brought the order to an address in the small community of West Island Fairhaven, located on Buzzards Bay, about 20 miles southeast of Fall River.

“It was a normal night for me,” Furtado told CNN Thursday, “I was almost at the end of my shift.”

But when she got to the house around 10 p.m., she spotted Sullivan lying on the ground outside, bleeding from her head. Sullivan, who had a previous arm injury and a bad knee, had been waiting outside for the delivery.

As she turned, she recounted, her arm and knee gave out. She fell and hit her head on the way down.

“I just remember laying on my driveway thinking ‘This is pretty much over,’ ” Sullivan recalled. “I was laying there and saw a lot of white clouds.”

Furtado has previous medical knowledge from her time training as an Emergency Medical Technician, but had failed the National Registry test. She noticed Sullivan’s blood was congealing and estimated she had been lying outside for about 15 to 20 minutes.

“Caryn was unresponsive, and her eyes kept rolling to the back of her head,” Furtado said, “I felt like I was going to lose her.”

Sullivan’s husband Robert had been asleep inside the house, but awoke to Furtado’s calls for help. She told him to get some supplies as she dialed 911.

According to Officer Jillian Jodoin of the Fairhaven Police Department, Furtado spoke with the dispatcher while rendering aid.

“At that moment Sophia became a part of our team to aid Caryn.” Jodoin told CNN, “I asked her if it was possible for her to keep stabilizing Caryn’s neck to keep her spine safe, her answer was, ‘I’m not going anywhere.’ ”

Soon after, officers and medics began arriving. Furtado stayed with her, until Sullivan was transported to the hospital.

Sullivan said she was in the hospital for three weeks following the incident, and suffered from two severe brain bleeds. Robert and her daughter, Veronica, were by her side the entire time. At one point, she said the two of them were waiting until 2 a.m. to hear if she would make it.


Recovery, Rewards and Friendship


After her time in the hospital, Sullivan arrived home in March. “I couldn’t drive, I couldn’t write, I could barely walk,” she said. While she was deemed fully recovered at the end of March, she’s still working on some things, after losing 60% of her hearing, and she is now able to drive short distances.

Despite the terrifying experience, Sullivan and Furtado gained friendship during the trauma.

“I am so thankful for her, she’s my guardian angel,” Sullivan said, “Thank God she was there, if she wasn’t there, I’d be dead.” They have both met each other’s families and Sullivan even gave Furtado’s two children Easter gifts.

Furtado was recognized at a ceremony on Wednesday. DoorDash awarded her a $1,000 educational grant.

“We are incredibly grateful to Ms. Furtado for stepping in during a critical moment and are relieved that the customer has since safely recovered.” A DoorDash spokesperson told CNN, “Ms. Furtado’s care and quick response were nothing short of heroic and we are honored to have been able to show our appreciation for her tremendous efforts.”

Fairhaven police also presented her with a lifesaving award.

“Sophia sprang into action, alerted Robert, activated the emergency response system, implemented materials needed, rendered aid, and helped officers streamline information gathering. She saved a life.” FPD told CNN in a written statement.

The recognition came as a surprise to Furtado.

“I was not expecting it at all,” She said, “I would’ve done that for anyone.”

Furtado had previously been a DoorDash driver and picked up the job again in January. She said she hopes to use the money toward more EMT school when her family becomes more financially stable. She and Sullivan added they will continue to stay in touch and plan to meet up again.

™ & © 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

Clarence Gilyard Jr. has died at the age of 66. (Arlene Richie/Shutterstock)...
Toyin Owoseje, CNN

Clarence Gilyard, ‘Die Hard’ and ‘Walker, Texas Ranger’ star, dead at 66

Clarence Gilyard, the actor best known for playing computer hacker Theo in "Die Hard" and naval flight officer Marcus "Sundown" Williams in "Top Gun," has died at the age of 66.
15 hours ago
Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) speaks during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hea...
Michael Houck

Mitt Romney calls Trump a ‘gargoyle’ after dinner with Ye, Nick Fuentes

Utah Senator Mitt Romney called former President Donald Trump a gargoyle hanging over the Republican party after his dinner with white supremacist Nick Fuentes and rapper Ye.
15 hours ago
Tea time and Christmastime coincide at The Plaza's elegant Palm Court, where three holiday tea menu...
Marnie Hunter, CNN

15 luxury hotels that go all out for Christmas

These luxury hotels have the most glamorous Christmas decorations of the season.
15 hours ago
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 13: Defence ministers and delegates are seen at the start of the North ...

NATO renews membership vow to Ukraine, pledges arms and aid

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg says war-torn Ukraine will one day become a member of the world’s largest security alliance
15 hours ago
The McGold Card is back at McDonald's. (McDonald's)...
Jordan Valinsky, CNN Business

McDonald’s is giving people the chance to win free food for life

Beginning December 5, every order completed in the McDonald's app for at least $1 will enter customers into a contest to win a McGold Card.
15 hours ago
A woman in Minnesota loses peripheral vision from apparent exposure to mercury in beauty creams.
Meera Senthilingam, CNN

Mother loses peripheral vision from apparent exposure to mercury in beauty creams

A woman in Minnesota lost part of her vision and inadvertently put her entire household at risk of mercury poisoning, most likely from using beauty creams.
15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
‘She’s my guardian angel’: DoorDasher saves Massachusetts woman’s life while delivering pizza