Runner thanks emergency services after suffering cardiac arrest whilst out jogging in Harlow
Crime / Thu 16th Feb 2023 am28 07:37am
RUNNER Andrew Dickinson and his family have thanked the police officers and paramedics who saved Andrew’s life after he suffered a cardiac arrest while out jogging in Harlow.
Andrew’s heart stopped beating and only the rapid intervention of paramedics Mark McHugh, Sarah Pym and Jo Howe, and police officers PC Matt Henderson, PC Rhys Lawrence, A/PS Sam Taylor, PC Abi Lawton and Special Constable Lauren Budd prevented a post-Christmas jog ending in tragedy.
Andrew, 63, and his wife, Margaret, had travelled to Essex on 29 December from their home in Ossett, West Yorkshire, to visit their daughter Amber and grandchildren.
The following day, keen runners Andrew and Amber headed out for some exercise.
Andrew had complained of tightness in his chest in the previous days but put this down to a pilates strain. They’d passed the halfway mark of their run and when Andrew’s pain intensified.
Amber ran home to get her car and returned to find her dad collapsed on the street and not breathing. She called 999 and gave Andrew CPR for more than five minutes.
Paramedic Mark McHugh was first at the scene, and he was quickly joined an off-duty nurse, PC Matt Henderson and PC Rhys Lawrence.
Mark applied a defibrillator, and the team took turns to perform CPR as they were joined by more paramedic and police colleagues and the air ambulance.
After five shocks from the defibrillator and an injection of drugs, Andrew’s heart restarted. He spent eleven days in Basildon Hospital and is now on the road to recovery.
Andrew, Margaret and Amber came to Harlow Police Station for an emotional reunion with the officers and paramedics who were at the scene.
“The last thing I remember is fastening up my running shoes and three days later I woke up in hospital,” Andrew said. “It’s fantastic to get the opportunity to say thank you. Having worked for the police, I know this doesn’t happen too often.
“The very first thing I wanted to do was shake the hands of the people who saved my life. It’s the very least I can do.”
“There are so many people who were so kind to me on the day,” added Amber. “It’s really nice to meet them and have a clearer memory about what they look like, and also find out how it affected them. It’s not just a job to them – they really care.”
Paramedic Mark McHugh said it was “great to meet Andrew and see that our work has made a difference” and his comments were echoed by PC Matt Henderson.
He said: “It wasn’t any easy experience for anyone, so for Andrew to come in and see us, and for us to know that our efforts had helped to keep him alive is a wonderful feeling.”
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