By Bill Shields, WBZ-TVBy Bill Shields

SOUTH BOSTON (CBS) – Not much stops 84-year-old Joanne McNealy of South Boston. But a couple of days ago, as she was walking home from the market, she slipped and fell, hitting her head on the concrete.

That’s when a host of strangers came to her aid.

“It sounded like a heavy box hitting the ground,” said Julie Galgay, who lives just steps away from where Joanne fell. “My friend Tish and I came out, and saw her laying on the sidewalk, and she was very disoriented. But she kept saying she wanted to go home.”

Galgay and Tish Broderick knew she wasn’t alright.

“We thought she needed medical attention, because she didn’t even know who the president was,” Broderick said. “She had a golf ball sized lump on the back of her head.”

As Tish and Julie comforted Mrs. McNealy, another passerby ran to the fire station. And Lt. Brian Nee from Engine 2 came running. He examined Joanne, and called EMS.

As it turns out, Joanne McNealy had a severe concussion, and is still hospitalized. But if her neighbors had let her go home that evening, it may have been much worse.

Julie and Tish say they did nothing unusual.

“I hope that when I’m 84 and fall, someone helps me,” said Tish.

“It’s why we love living in Southie,” said Julie, “because people take care of each other around here.”


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