Woman becomes friends with troopers who rescued her on the steps of the state capitol

Two Colorado State Patrol troopers are now friends with a woman they helped rescue after she collapsed on the steps of the state capitol.

DENVER - Ellen Moroney has two new friends after they helped rescue her in March of last year.

"I fell to the ground, went unconscious, had a seizure that ultimately changed my life," Moroney said.

Shortly after, Troopers Jesse Bartunek and Nicholas Hazlett ran to help her.

"I immediately looked around to see if there was any blood or anything, pulled her hair back off of her face to make sure she wasn't choking on anything," Trooper Bartunek said.

Hazlett said he took a knee beside her to stabilize her neck.

She didn't know it at the time, but after seeing doctors she found out why she fell in the first place. An MRI revealed Moroney had a brain tumor.

"I had to have brain surgery," Moroney said. "They've taken out part of my skull and I have a metal plate in my head now. I had staples in my head for a while and they did confirm that it is brain cancer."

She said her cancer is inoperable.

Moroney and the troopers who helped her used to see each other often in passing, but that one moment on the capitol steps changed their relationship.

"I can't tell you how many crashes I've been on where it was life or death for somebody and that was it, you never see them again," Bartunek said. "But with Ellen, we see her everyday."

Moroney said she's often scared she'll have another seizure in public but she takes comfort in knowing there are more troopers like Bartunek and Hazlett to help.

"I appreciate the friendship and I feel very reassured having them around here," she said.

The troopers said a lot of people see officers as robots, but after what she went through, Moroney sees and appreciates the people behind those badges.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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