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  • Writer's pictureApocalyptic Thanksgiving

The Day I Almost Died...

Richard Soriano Kaiser ER
Richard Soriano Kaiser ER

...And became a zombie.

Well, half of it’s true. If I had died, it would still be a mystery as if I were to become a zombie. January of this year is when I had a heart attack. I could barely breathe and I couldn’t stand up. But I was stubbornly resisting because we were supposed to leave the next morning for Las Vegas.

Our wedding cake fighting zombies at the apocalypse
Our wedding cake fighting zombies at the apocalypse

My brother drove me to Urgent Care anyway. From Urgent Care, they called 911 where the ambulance drove me literally across the street to the Emergency Room. A thing about heart attacks is that they move you to first in line. They also keep checking on me to be sure that I was still alive. It felt like I was in one of those hospital TV shows.

So they did surgery on two days later to find out what was happening with me. An hour before surgery, I watched the movie CASTAWAY from Robert Zemeckis movie where Tom Hanks survives on an island and rots of loneliness. Will he be rescued? I was worried for him because I was alone in the pre-op room. No family and no phone because they said it was only going to

be a short while. I was in a large room full of strangers hidden behind curtains. You could tell their ages and emotional states just by the sound of their voices - anxiety, enjoyment, and spirituality.

Richard and Holly as zombies
If I were a zombie, this is how I imagined I'd be

At that moment, I realized that this could be the end of my life. This is it. My heart swelled with such gratitude and love, more than any other moment or birthday celebration in my life. I said a prayer asking God to take care of me. If it’s my time to go then he should take care of everyone in this room and everyone in my life. If I were to die, my wife Holly said that she would resurrect me to me kill me herself. Before I could finish the movie, the curtain swung wide open and I was whisked away to surgery. I never finished CAST AWAY, but here I am alive today.

I am so grateful this Thanksgiving weekend. More than you can imagine if you had another chance at life.

It must’ve been destiny that I met Kevin Smith this year. I had spent NY Evening at his comedy show at the Improv on Melrose. Every year I laugh with him at Hall H at ComiCon. He also had a heart attack the year before. And his was just like mine where there was blockage in his left anterior descending artery, aka ‘The Widow Maker’.

We coincidentally met at the Chinese Theater the day before his hands and feet would be immortalized into the cement. He was soaking in the moment. We briefly swapped stories and wished each other well. And we both hoped to meet Stan Lee in the big sky when it’s our time to go

Kevin Smith’s prints are set in cement right next to Stan’s and near Carrie Fisher’s. This is like a dream come true for Kevin. I also love that they all get to share that special distinction. Kevin Smith made a movie this year, Jay and Silent Bob Reboot. I also had a dream come true and am making my movie, My Apocalyptic Thanksgiving.

Thanks to everyone for reaching out this year while I was recovering both physically and emotionally.

It was harder emotionally more than physically I have so much to be grateful for this Thanksgiving: friends, family and realized dreams. Holly and I would’ve been heartbroken if we hadn’t finished this film. Thank you all again for your patience as we had to delay post

production due to a medical emergency. And yes, I have a doctor’s note to prove it!

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