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He shot the love of my life

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Jeremy Holland

Jeremy Holland, Property Manager of the President of Palm Beach Condominium was shot in the head at close range on Friday morning, October 3rd by Charles Croghan, a former doorman who had been terminated. Jeremy lived through this horrific nightmare, but has a long uncertain journey ahead. See the Palm Beach Daily News article below.

Posted: 12:00 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 9, 2014          By Michele Dargan         Daily News Staff Writer

Michael Reiman left his fifth-floor apartment at The President of Palm Beach condominium just before 10 a.m. on Oct. 3.

An aircraft mechanic, he was heading to work at Reiman Aviation at Palm Beach County Park Airport in Lantana.

As the elevator reached the second floor, Reiman heard screaming and yelling, but he couldn't tell where it was coming from.

When the doors opened on the first floor, he stepped into the lobby and saw office manager Dana Enriquez rolling on the floor screaming, “He's dead. He's dead. All that blood.”

Reiman looked to his left and saw property manager Jeremy Holland lying on his back in his office — a pool of blood expanding around his head.

Disgruntled former doorman Charles Croghan had shot Holland in the head at point-blank range, police have said, in front of Enriquez, Holland’s girlfriend.

Reiman’s emergency medical training kicked in.

“It was gruesome,” Reiman said. “I must have hit the scene within three to four seconds after it happened. I grabbed some papers out of the garbage can to make a makeshift pillow. I went over to him, kneeled down and he wasn't breathing. I elevated his head and was about to clear his throat and begin CPR, when he coughed and started to breathe.”

He held Holland's head up until emergency personnel arrived, all the time talking to him. Blood kept flowing from the back of Holland’s head, Reiman said, but he saw none on Holland's face and forehead.

“I just kept saying things like, ‘Everything is going to be all right and don't worry, you're going to be fine,’” Reiman said. “He wasn't conscious, but the fingers on his right hand started to move. I think he knew I was there.”

Holland was taken by Trauma Hawk to St. Mary's Medical Center, where he initially was placed in a medically induced coma.

Reiman walked outside and looked at his clothes, which were covered in blood. After giving a written statement to police, he cleaned himself up and went to work.

Reiman, a 15-year resident of the building, describes Holland as “a fine person and friend.

“I was able to immediately react because of the training I received from the Coast Guard Auxiliary,” said Reiman, a member of Flotilla 51. “Paramedics told me, ‘if he has a chance it’s because of you.’ I would have done it for anybody.”

In a letter to residents, condo board President Jean Fergus described Reiman as “a true hero.”

She also praised head maintenance man David Sampson. After police left, she asked him to call a professional cleaning service for Holland’s office. But Sampson told her he wanted to do the clean up himself.

“He told me it would be therapy for him to be able to ‘do something,’” Fergus wrote. “He did this out of love and respect for Jeremy. He is another hero.”

‘Jeremy’s been shot’

Lake Worth resident Omah Padron owns a bookkeeping service and works as a subcontractor for many of South End condominiums, including the President.

She's also is close friends with Holland and Enriquez, and socializes with the couple outside of work.

On the morning of the shooting, Padron was working at Mayfair House, a nearby condominium. When Mayfair Property Manager Jessica Blaxton heard the news, she went looking for Padron.

“She said, ‘You need to sit down. I think Jeremy’s been shot.’ I said, ‘What? You have to take me there,’” Padron said. “I couldn’t imagine this could happen to Jeremy. He’s kind, considerate, good to his employees, happy, positive.”

Blaxton drove Padron to the President, where the area was blocked off with crime scene tape and filled with emergency vehicles and reporters.

Padron told a police officer that she was close friends with Holland and Enriquez. She found out that Holland was alive and Enriquez was at the police station giving a statement.

“The officer said to me, ‘I think she could really use a friend.’”

When Padron arrived at the police station, she saw Enriquez and two friends walking out.

Enriquez said she wanted to go to church to pray. Together, they went to St. Juliana Catholic Church in West Palm Beach and called a group of their closest friends to join them.

“I am convinced that’s the reason he is alive,” Padron said. “There is no question that he should be dead if not for the power of prayer.”

By the time they got to the hospital, Holland was in surgery.

A nurse told them that before Holland went into surgery, doctors asked him to give a thumbs up if he could hear them. He did.

“We thought that was so amazing, because that's Jeremy's signature pose in pictures,” Padron said. “He always gives a thumbs up. That gave us a lot of hope.

“You can’t reconcile why something like this happened to someone so nice and good,” Padron said. “And to know his life may be changed forever for just doing his job, is so awful.”

‘We felt very connected’

Enriquez met Holland when she began working at the President 14 years ago.

They started out as best friends and have been dating for seven years, she said.

“We felt very connected and very close from the time we met,” she said. “He’s fun-loving, kind and generous. He goes out of his way to help anybody who needs it. There are a lot of elderly people who live in the building and he does extra things for them on his own time. He’s the kind of person who likes to help others.”

Enriquez, 46, works in the same office as Holland and was in the room when Croghan walked in with the gun, she said.

“He shot him right in front of me,” Enriquez said.

She remembers screaming, “He shot the love of my life.”

Enriquez didn’t discuss details of the shooting or Croghan’s firing because she doesn’t want to jeopardize the police investigation.

What she does want to talk about is Holland.

“He’s really been there for my [two] kids,” she said. “He financially and emotionally helped with them as a stepfather and role model even though we weren’t married. You wouldn’t know they weren’t his own kids the way he treated them.”

Holland began working at the condominium at age 21, as a valet for the on-site restaurant, Cafe Cellini. He worked as a doorman before becoming property manager in 2005.

“They saw the potential in him to promote him,” Enriquez said. “It takes a unique person to deal with the different personalities.”

On Oct. 10, a week after the shooting, Holland turned 40. He and Enriquez had planned to leave that week on a trip to California, Las Vegas and Bryce Canyon National Park to celebrate his birthday. Instead, Holland remained in St. Mary’s Medical Center fighting for his life.

On Oct. 27, after regaining consciousness, Holland was flown to an out-of-state rehabilitation facility, where he is undergoing intense physical, occupational and speech therapy.

“He’s progressing,” she said. “It’s a slow process. With a brain injury, they don’t have a crystal ball to tell you the end result.”

Enriquez doesn’t consider herself a religious person but says she believes in God — more so now because Holland survived. She believes prayers were the reason.

Enriquez hasn’t been back to work since the shooting and has been traveling back and forth to the rehabilitation facility as much as she can.

“It feels too crazy to be real,” she said. “I know the reality and I’m living the reality. You don’t think things like this can happen to you, especially at work in a condominium in Palm Beach.”

 

Trial set for March

Charles Croghan, 72, of Lantana is being held without bail in the Palm Beach County Jail, charged with first-degree attempted murder and aggravated assault with a firearm.

Croghan walked into the President of Palm Beach condominium on the morning of Oct. 3, walked into Property Manager Jeremy Holland’s office and fired one shot into Holland’s head, according to police.

Dana Enriquez, who was sitting in the same office, ran into the lobby after witnessing the shooting, police said. As Croghan walked out, the police report said, he pointed his handgun at Enriquez and said to her, “You’re next. You want one of these?”

Croghan has pleaded not guilty to both charges. A jury trial is set for March.

TO HELP

A fund — called the Jeremy Holland/Dana Enriquez Thumbs Up Fund — has been set up to help with medical bill and rehabilitation expenses.

Holland’s signature pose in photographs is the thumbs up, friends say.

To donate, visit giveforward.comand type in either name.

1411JeremyAndDana

Jeremy Holland and Dana Enriquez

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