7-year-old Queens girl dies after choking on a Doritos chip in prank gone wrong

The Queens girl who choked on a Doritos chip in a prank gone wrong died in her mother’s arms Friday, family told the Daily News. Precise Tucker, 7, had been on life support at Long Island Jewish Cohen Children’s Medical Center since Wednesday, authorities said. That’s when Precise tied a bathrobe belt around her neck to play a joke on her mother, Purity Baldwin. Baldwin, who was used to her daughter’s pranks, left the kitchen and moments later the girl began choking on a snack. Queens girl on life support after she chokes on Doritos chip Precise’s 15-year-old brother saw his little sister struggling to breathe and ran out of their Astoria apartment screaming for help. Baldwin held out hope that her daughter would pull through —— but it was too late, the girl’s grief-stricken grandmother told The News. “She wanted to see if (Precise) could come out of this. This is the daughter she always dreamed for,” the grandmother, who declined to give her name, said. Sign up for BREAKING NEWS Emails privacy policy Thanks for subscribing! Send a Letter to the Editor Join the Conversation: facebook Tweet Continue Reading

Queens girl on life support after she chokes on a Doritos chip

A 7-year-old Queens girl is on life support after she choked on a Doritos chip while pretending to hang herself as part of a bizarre prank she was playing on her mother, authorities said Thursday. Precise Tucker tied a bathrobe belt around her neck and fastened the other end to a refrigerator handle Wednesday at about 8:30 p.m., then pretended to choke, police said. Precise has a reputation for being a prankster, and her mom, Purity Baldwin, told her to stop playing around, then stepped out of the kitchen and left the girl on her own, cops said. That’s when Precise started snacking on chips, and started to choke for real, cops said. Her 15-year-old brother saw her in distress and ran out of their Astoria apartment to get help. He banged on the door of Debi Pawluk, a former EMT, yelling, “Come! Come! There’s something wrong with my sister!” Pawluk said she stuck her fingers down Precise’s mouth to clear out her throat, while a neighbor, John Tziastoudias, helped. “Her mother was already doing CPR before I got there,” she said. Precise was eating Doritos, and looking up a video on YouTube when she choked, Pawluk said. “I got the chip out of her mouth. She threw up. I cleared the ventway so I can do the CPR,” Pawluk said. “When she threw up, I didn’t know if it was the hot Doritos or the BBQ.” Pawluk said the bathrobe likely had nothing to do with why she choked. “That was a prank. The thing was loose,” she said. “The brother cut it off. There’s absolutely no marks whatsoever on this girl’s neck.” Pawluk added, “She’s just a prankster. She was pranking and she was doing a thing on YouTube.” Medics brought in a device to suction Precise’s mouth, then intubated her and took her to Elmhurst Hospital, Tziastoudias said. Precise was transferred to Long Island Jewish Cohen Children’s Medical Center. “If anybody Continue Reading

Off-duty firefighter saves grandmother, two kids from burning Queens home

An off-duty firefighter rescued a grandmother and two children from certain death Thursday after one of the kids set fire to the basement in the family home, according to the FDNY. Roben Duge was on his way home at about 6 p.m. when he saw thick black smoke pouring out of the house in Jamaica, Queens, sources said. A child in the house was playing around and accidentally set the basement on fire, sources said. The child was too afraid to tell the grandma right way, allowing the blaze spread. Two killed, a dozen more injured in Bronx apartment fire By the time the elderly woman realized the house was on fire, the family was trapped inside. Duge, a five-year veteran of the department who’s assigned to Ladder 103 in Brooklyn, saw the blaze, broke into a dead sprint and burst into the two-story home, sources and the FDNY said. He dragged the two children and the grandmother out of the house without major injuries, sources said. The fire was brought under control about half an hour after it started. Firefighters injured as facade of burning Brooklyn building falls Sign up for BREAKING NEWS Emails privacy policy Thanks for subscribing! Tags: jamaica new york fires fdny house fires Send a Letter to the Editor Join the Conversation: facebook Tweet Continue Reading

Forklift crushes construction worker to death at violation-plagued Queens jobsite: ‘He was afraid of dying’

A horrific forklift accident killed a hardhat at a troubled Queens construction site Tuesday, officials said. Edgar Pazmino, 34, an immigrant from Ecuador, was crushed against a wall by the heavy machine, witnesses said. He died at the scene. The jobsite had been peppered with safety violations and stop work orders since September, records show. Pazmino’s brother-in-law told the Daily News that Pazmino repeatedly expressed concern about the working conditions at the site. “He used to say it was very dangerous to work there. He told me this last Saturday,” he said. Queens man identified as victim of horrific construction accident “‘There's not enough security. One of these days I'm not going to survive.’ He was afraid of dying. He always complained about it." Pazmino was working with another man to lift a large window with a forklift when the window fell on him on 89th Ave. near 150th St. in Jamaica at about 11 a.m., police said. “His friend was moving the window,” said Thomas, 37, a fellow construction worker. “When he was moving the window he didn't see the dude was behind him. So he pushed it toward the wall and it crushed him. It crushed his head, I know that. He was gone.” Another construction worker, who wouldn't give his name, said the workers had been warned to be careful, but they didn’t stop what they were doing. Hardhat crushed to death between truck, forklift in Brooklyn “They didn't listen to the call,” the worker said. “They told them several times, ‘Don't do that.’ They were maneuvering the forklift. The forklift won. They were telling them not to stand behind the forklift. It was struggling to carry all that it was carrying.” He said an alarm went off and all the workers exited the building under construction. “This could had been prevented,” the worker said. Continue Reading

101-year-old woman recalls saving lives as volunteer firefighter during stint that spanned decades

You’ll find them running into burning buildings — but not on the payroll. When 101-year-old Julie Ryan began volunteering at the Rockaway Point firehouse in 1944, she felt she had no other choice — most of the male firefighters at the department had been drafted to fight in World War II, and someone needed to step in and hold down the fort. “All the men had to leave, that’s what happened here,” she told the Daily News from her Breezy Point home in Queens — the original Rockaway Point firehouse, built in 1909. “We used to have our drills on the floor here,” she said. “In this room itself, there was a whole fire truck.” The mother of 10, grandmother of nine and great-grandmother of 11 said not a day goes by that she doesn’t reminisce about her days as a young volunteer. “I did deliver a baby in the snow. We couldn’t get the ambulance to go all the way to Rockaway, to the hospital,” she recalled. “I saw her last year and she thanked me — she’s a grown woman now, and I helped to deliver her as a baby.” When the war ended in 1945 and the troops returned, Ryan helped form the Ambulance and Rescue Corps. with the Ladies Auxiliary. “When they came back, the ladies stayed,” said Ryan, who served for more than 60 years. “We learned to man the ambulance.” To this day, among the city’s 10,000-plus FDNY firefighters, there are dozens of volunteers serving with seven donation-funded fire departments, for no reason other than to protect and serve the communities they live in. “A lot of guys also become EMTs,” Chief of Department James Morton of Rockaway Point Volunteer Fire Department told The News. “We run two New York State-certified BLS (basic life support) ambulances and have about 20 EMTs.” There are seven volunteer firehouses in the city — Gerritsen Beach Fire Volunteers, in Brooklyn; Continue Reading

School bus with 3 kids inside fatally strikes woman in Queens

A mini school bus with three children aboard struck and killed a woman crossing the street in Queens early Tuesday, police said. The woman, believed to be in her 50s, was crossing Kew Gardens Ave. from south to north in Kew Gardens at about 6:45 a.m. when the bus slammed into her, police said. Medics said she died at the scene. Police didn’t immediately release her identity. The bus driver remained at the scene and has not been charged. The vehicle is owned by Logan Bus Company Inc. A bus matron and the three children inside the bus weren’t hurt. Sign up for BREAKING NEWS Emails privacy policy Thanks for subscribing! Send a Letter to the Editor Join the Conversation: facebook Tweet Continue Reading

Widow sobs seeing murdered husband’s blood on Queens sidewalk

He tried to get home. Those were the words of a heartbroken widow as she stood on the Queens street where her husband was murdered early Sunday — just steps from the couple’s home. Her husband, Luis Apolonio, was approached by his killer on 103rd St. near 35th Ave. in Corona about 4:20 a.m., according to authorities. He was stabbed multiple times during the bloody attack, cops said. Medics rushed him to Elmhurst Hospital Center, but he could not be saved. His widow, Marisol Mendes, 32, placed a bouquet of flowers on the street where her husband died, and joined her devastated mother-in-law in lighting two candles to remember him. “He left the house early and never came back. He was trying to get back home. But he didn’t make it. He collapsed right here,” Mendes whispered. “He died right here.” The victim’s mother, Griselda Apolonio, 47, said it was unbearable to see the dried blood on the sidewalk. “It’s hard to come here and see where my son died. It’s very painful,” she said. “I want police to find whoever did this. I want justice. He killed my son and attacked another man. He’s still out there.” Two next-door neighbors told them they stumbled upon the bloodied victim. “I opened the door in the middle of the night and saw him laying down there. He was facedown,” said one neighbor, who didn’t give her name. “At first I thought it was my son. Sometimes he goes out in the middle of the night. But then police turned him around. I saw it wasn’t my son.” Apolonio moved to New York from Veracruz, Mexico, more than 10 years ago. He had a 2-year-old daughter and worked at a dry cleaning business nearby. “We don’t know why he was attacked like this. All I know is that he never came back home,” Mendes said. “He was a good man, hard worker, dedicated father. Continue Reading

Queens stabbing leaves one dead, another injured

A 37-year-old man was stabbed to death on the street in Queens Sunday morning, police said. A second man, 34, was slashed in the right leg during the bloody attack outside a closed 99-cents store on 103rd St. near 35th Ave. in Corona about 4:20 a.m., according to authorities. The fatally wounded man was stabbed multiple times around his body. Medics rushed both victims to Elmhurst Hospital, where the stabbed victim died. Police did not immediately release his identity. The slashed victim was in stable condition, officials said. Cops have not made any arrests. Sign up for BREAKING NEWS Emails privacy policy Thanks for subscribing! Send a Letter to the Editor Join the Conversation: facebook Tweet Continue Reading

Man found dead with belt around neck in Queens donation bin

A man was found dead Friday — with a belt around his neck — inside a clothing donation bin in Queens, police said. The unidentified man, who had the name “Paola” tattooed across his chest, was discovered in a metal clothing and shoe collection box on Northern Blvd. near 62nd St. in Woodside around 2:30 a.m., cops said. “The people who collect the clothing from a donation box came to collect the stuff. They opened it and called the cops,” said a worker at a nearby 7-Eleven. Police said the man’s death was a suicide. The city medical examiner will determine the man’s cause and manner of death. Police released a photo of the mystery man’s ink in the hopes of identifying him. Sign up for BREAKING NEWS Emails privacy policy Thanks for subscribing! Send a Letter to the Editor Join the Conversation: facebook Tweet Continue Reading

Queens man with ‘beer belly’ has 30-pound tumor removed

His gut told him it wasn't a beer belly. Kevin Daly, a financial planner from Hoboken, knew something wasn't right when he shed 34 pounds after an open-heart surgery in 2015 — but his protruding belly didn't shrink an ounce. “I thought they literally left stuffing and tools in me from surgery,” Daly, 63, told the Daily News Friday. He said everyone dismissed the persistent paunch as a “beer belly,” the type of stubborn visceral fat that often comes with changing hormones and age. Doctors in India remove brain tumor big as a ‘second head’ “I don't even like beer,” he explained. “I was lean. I'm 6'3" and very athletic.” Through a combination of diet and exercise, the former varsity jock at Martin Van Buren High School in Queens went from about 230 down to 198 pounds after his heart surgery. His nagging intuition refused to let go. Eventually, he convinced Dr. Varinder Singh, the chair of cardiovascular medicine at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, to order a CAT scan, over the objections of his insurance. The results left Daly feeling “vindicated and scared.” A 12-pound tumor had invaded his midsection. A cancer 'vaccine' is completely eliminating tumors in mice During surgery in December, doctors discovered it was nearly triple the size they estimated. The 30-pound monster mass had also wrapped around one of Daly's kidneys. It took the strength of two residents to hold it aloft while Dr. Julio Teixeira painstakingly cut it out over four hours. The “enormous” tumor was the largest Teixeira had ever removed. Boy with 10-pound facial tumor dies after surgery “It's one thing to see the picture. It's another thing to actually have it in your hands,” the amazed doctor told The News. “Now they tell me it took ten Continue Reading