'I was in a knife fight with the devil.' - Stewart Air National Guardsman recounts COVID-19 diagnosis

A Stewart Air National Guard pilot who nearly died from COVID-19 is now thanking the health care workers who saved him, days after his release from the hospital.

News 12 Staff

Apr 28, 2020, 9:17 PM

Updated 1,490 days ago

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A Stewart Air National Guard pilot who nearly died from COVID-19 is now thanking the health care workers who saved him, days after his release from the hospital.
Stewart Air National Guardsman Major Paul Tucker Jancsy was released from the hospital late last week after being in the ICU for nearly a month.
On Tuesday, he thanked his medical team for a second chance at life and shared his story with News 12’s Blaise Gomez.
“I was in a knife fight with the devil, and I wasn’t getting up," he says.
The 40-year-old served two tours of duty overseas, but says no fight was more dangerous than his battle with COVID-19.
“It was an absolute fight for my life," he says. “Every breath was a fight. You don’t know how addicted to air you are until you don’t have any.”
Jancsy lives in Saratoga Springs with his wife, Sara, and was admitted to the hospital last month with severe coronavirus symptoms.
The day before their first wedding anniversary, Jancsy was put in a coma and was on a ventilator for nearly two weeks.
“The doctor said I have one of the strongest hearts he’d ever seen and without that, I probably wouldn’t have survived," he says.
On Thursday, the C-17 pilot, who also flies for Delta out of New York City, walked out of the hospital on his own to the arms of his wife.
“Despite his ordeal, Jancsy doesn’t expect to be sidelined for long and hopes by summer he will to be back in action at Stewart Air National Guard Base and back in the skies.
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