TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo saved a man’s life Tuesday at the Florida Capitol.

What You Need To Know

  •  Surgeon General Joesph Ladapo provided life-saving care to Willie James Davis, Jr. at the Capitol
  •  Ladapo stablized Davis with a defibrilator after minutes of chest compressions

  •  Davis is in recovery

Willie James Davis Jr. on Tuesday morning suffered a cardiac event during a children’s event near the Capitol Courtyard.

Ladapo, passing through the area, rushed to aid the 57-year-old. He performed chest compressions and stabilized Davis using a defibrillator, according to the incident report.

“I’m grateful I was at the right place at the right time,” said Ladapo. “I love being a doctor and I especially appreciate times when my experience makes a difference.”

First responders later transported Davis to a nearby hospital, where doctors explained the Surgeon General likely saved his life. 

Ladapo visited Davis at the hospital the following day.

“A perfect stranger made a decision to give aid and saved my life,” said Davis. “I believe he already has his wings. Again, I thank God for the blessing of continued life and the angel He sent me.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed Ladapo as State Surgeon General in 2021.

He is a Wake Forrest and Harvard Medical School graduate. He is also a professor at the University of Florida College of Medicine. 

The pair may soon reunite after recovery.

“I am glad I was able to be there for him, and I am praying for his recovery and look forward to getting together with him when he’s released from the hospital,” added Ladapo.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death across the United States, according to the CDC.

The disease, the agency says, kills an American every 34 seconds.