"If they hadn't shown up, I think my son would've died," Ryan Murphy said about the first responders who revitalized his 11-month-old son

By Christina Dugan and Natalie Stone
January 04, 2018 03:45 PM
David Crotty/Patrick McMullan/Getty

Ryan Murphy is opening up about the “traumatic” night his son, Ford, nearly died as an infant.

“It was a really traumatic experience. I had a newborn baby. My son Ford was 11 months old and in the middle of the night stopped breathing,” the Glee and American Horror Story creator said at the winter 2018 Television Critics Association press tour on Thursday about Ford, now 3.

“We called 911. Obviously we were in panic and we were doing CPR and they showed up at 2 a.m. in the morning. There were 4 responders. They were incredibly and calm and nurturing. They forced me to leave the room,” Murphy, 52, explained at the 9-1-1 panel. “They brought him back to life.”

He continued: “They only allowed one parent to ride with the child in the ambulance, so my husband David went and I stayed with our other one upstairs. The officers and responders stayed to get a report from me I had the experience if sitting with them and talking to them. They really kind of talked me off the ledge.”

Murphy, who also shares son Logan Phineas, 5, with his photographer husband David Miller, was impressed by the professionalism of the first responders, which inspired his new Fox drama, 9-1-1, starring Angela Bassett, Connie Britton and Peter Krause. The series follows emergency responders who must try to balance saving those who are at their most vulnerable with solving problems in their own lives.

“I’m very struck by what brave people they were and how strong they were,” the father of two shared. “So from that moment, my interest became their lives and how they show up and be such a balance.”

According to Murphy, Ford had a “tracheal blockage in his throat that is genetic” — something he was born with and his parents were unaware of. “When they took him to the hospital they did a procedure to correct that,” he said.

Reflecting on the terrifying night, Murphy credits the emergency responders for saving Ford’s life.

“If they hadn’t shown up, I think my son would’ve died,” he shared.

Days after Ford’s birth, Murphy admitted to being emotional when reflecting on the many blessings in his life.

“It’s so emotional. I’m always so stunned how emotional it is,” he shared with PEOPLE in October 2014. “As a gay guy, growing up I never thought I’d have a family. So the fact that I have two children … that I’m married … it’s very overwhelming for me.”

9-1-1 airs Wednesdays (9 p.m. ET) on Fox.