Scunthorpe

Heroic actions of quick-thinking ambulance crew saved man’s life

A retired man who suffered a cardiac arrest this summer has been reunited with the paramedic and technician whose quick decision-making saved his life.

Raymond Thelwell, 75, from Barnsley was gardening at his caravan park at 7 Lakes Country Park in Crowle, Scunthorpe on July 10 when he began feeling unwell.

He started experiencing chest pains and difficulty with his breathing so he told his wife Jennifer he was going for a lie down before saying “I think I need some help”.

Jennifer went over to their neighbour’s caravan, who is an ex nurse and immediately noticed Ray was showing signs of a heart attack so she rang 999.

Paramedic Nicola Stamp and Technician Lee Howe from Scunthorpe Ambulance Station arrived at the scene before immediately transporting Ray to hospital.

Any patients identified as having cardiac problems in EMAS’ North Lincolnshire area are normally taken to Castle Hill Hospital in Hull, which is Scunthorpe’s nearest cardiac hospital.

Paramedic Nicola made the decision to transport him to Scunthorpe General Hospital as if his condition deteriorated on route there could be a chance he would die, and this decision saved his life.

Nicola, who had her final day working at EMAS this week before joining Boston Pilgrim Hospital as a Paramedic Team Leader, told Ray on route to the hospital: “Don’t worry, you are in safe hands. I won’t let anything happen to you.”

Within minutes of arriving at Scunthorpe General Hospital Ray went into respiratory arrest and then into cardiac arrest, so technician Lee who was driving pre-alerted the control room.

Had they chosen to take Ray to Castle Hill they would have been 30 minutes away with his heart not beating, so the quick-thinking of the ambulance crew saved his life.

Ray and Jennifer went to Scunthorpe Ambulance Station on Wednesday to show their gratitude to Nicola and Lee.

Ray said: “There is nothing I can do to repay them for saving my life and I will never be able to find the words to say thank you enough.”

Jennifer said: “You are both heroes, I will never be able to express how thankful I am for still having my husband by my side.”