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Firefighter, medics save referee during football game

Julius Palazzo collapsed right before halftime, off-duty medics and a firefighter rushed the field to save him

Michael Arace
The Columbus Dispatch

COLUMBUS, Ohio — If there is a good time and place to have a heart attack, it is in the second quarter of the Hartley-Watterson football game, in the middle of the field, with six minutes to go before halftime. This is how it happened to Julius Palazzo on a Friday night in September.

Palazzo is a referee. No, that does not quite cover it. He is a referee's referee. He has been officiating high-school football, basketball and baseball games for 40 years. He has been running clinics for the Capital West Officials Association for 25 years. Almost anyone who wears stripes in central Ohio knows him. Half of them, he taught.

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