FORT WORTH, Texas — Henry Abuto is thankful to be alive.
“It’s still unreal,” Abuto said.
The 32-year-old Fort Worth chef and owner of catering company ByWasonga is standing tall once again.
“I’m a miracle, and I should not be here,” Abuto said.
Last month, he went to a fall gathering with friends. Suddenly, he began gasping for air. Abuto suffered a heart attack and went into cardiac arrest. Thankfully, there was a nurse in his group of friends.
“She started CPR, and that’s what saved my life,” Abuto said.
That’s not all that happened.
For years, Abuto has poured his love into the Fort Worth community through his generosity. Beyond running his catering company, he distributes hot meals to families in need and organizes toy drives. Friends and family describe him as someone who is always there, the kind of person who is always willing to help.
“I was blown away,” said Abuto.
His friends and family raised more than $100,000 on GoFundMe to help with his medical costs and recovery journey.
After spending 11 days in the hospital, Abuto went through two major heart procedures. He has a new medical device to keep his heart running properly. Now, he’s in the process of getting on the list for a heart transplant. He has a long road ahead, but said doctors told him his survival is a miracle.
“I’m overwhelmed with gratitude,” Abuto said. “There’s no way I would be able to say thank you enough for the love and support.”
He's trying to pay it forward. Abuto is organizing CPR training classes to help people get certified. His goal is to get 400 people to complete the training by January, and he hopes it may save someone else’s life, too.
“I just thank people for their prayers and support. I know it’s something I could never repay people for, but whatever time I have left, I’m gonna spend it living life with gratitude and giving back,” Abuto said.