Off-duty rookie cop saves mother of Fla. EMT after motorcycle crash

Jessica Sirignano was first on the scene of the crash that killed Joe Stroup, where she was able to help save and treat Martha Stroup before EMS arrived


Robyn Murrell
The Bradenton Herald

PALMETTO, Fla. — Rookie Bradenton Police Officer Jessica Sirignano had just finished her shift and was driving home when she discovered a couple thrown from their motorcycle and lying on U.S 41 in Palmetto.

Even though she was off duty, Sirignano turned around to help and felt compelled to stop.

"My friend that I lost in a car accident spoke to me," Sirignano said. "She put me somewhere to save another person's life."

After being involved in a hit-and-run crash Jan. 29 while on a motorcycle together, Joe Stroup, 52, and his wife, Martha Stroup, 48, of Parrish, lay unconscious with head and leg fractures along the highway.

Sirignano was on the scene before any other emergency personnel and did all she could to save both of their lives.

"My job was always to have this moment of actually being a life-saver," Sirignano said.

Martha's leg had been decapitated below the knee, and she was losing a lot of blood.

Sirignano applied a tourniquet to her leg to stop the bleeding and performed CPR until she regained consciousness.

"I believe my husband sent her," Martha Stroup said. "Because at that point, my husband probably knew he wasn't going to make it."

The officer tried to save Joe Stroup, too, but he was bleeding from his head, and his leg was dislocated with bone sticking out.

She took off his belt from around his waist and used it as a makeshift tourniquet to try to stop the bleeding.

He began to make gurgling sounds, so she began chest compressions until he stopped and she could detect a pulse, Bradenton Police Chief Melanie Bevan said Wednesday morning.

Manatee County EMS arrived at the scene and took them to the hospital, where Joe Stroup later died.

Martha Stroup went into a coma but has since recovered. She now uses a wheelchair to get around.

Officer Jessica Sirignano is credited with saving Martha's life and was awarded the Life Saving Award by Chief Bevan at Wednesday's City Council meeting.

Joe and Marth's son, Ryan Stroup, a Manatee County EMT, is grateful that Sirignano was there to help his parents.

"Without her, I wouldn't have a mother and already lost my father," said their youngest son. "It's nice to still have my mother with me. Without Jessica, she wouldn't be on this earth."

Sirignano said she joined the police department to serve her community and make her family proud.

"My mom served this county in the Army for over 20 years she's my inspiration."

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(c)2022 The Bradenton Herald (Bradenton, Fla.)

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