Quick-thinking East Midlands Ambulance Service crew puts hospital team on standby to save Ray

Quick-thinking East Midlands Ambulance Service crew puts hospital team on standby to save Ray

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Left to right- Technician Lee Howe, Wife Jennifer, Raymond Thelwell and Paramedic Nicola Stamp

A 75-year-old who suffered a cardiac arrest has thanked the paramedic and technician whose quick-thinking saved his life.

Retired Raymond Thelwell was gardening at his caravan at Lakes Country Park in Crowle, Scunthorpe, on 10 July when he started to feel unwell with chest pains and breathing difficulties.

He told his wife Jennifer he was going to lie down but shortly afterwards said he needed help and she went to a neighbouring caravan. Their neighbour, a nurse, immediately realised Ray was showing signs of a heart attack and rang 999.

Paramedic Nicola Stamp and Technician Lee Howe from Scunthorpe Ambulance Station quickly confirmed his condition and began the journey to hospital.

They knew Ray was critical and asked their control room to put Scunthorpe General Hospital’s (SGH) accident and emergency department on alert.

Nicola said: “I told Ray, ‘Don’t worry, you are in safe hands. I won’t let anything happen to you.’”

Minutes away from arriving at SGH, Ray went into respiratory arrest and then cardiac arrest.

With a promise to keep, as soon as the ambulance had stopped, Nicola opened the doors and a team of medics, who were on standby successfully restarted Ray's heart.

Yesterday Ray and Jennifer attended Scunthorpe Ambulance Station to say a huge thank you 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.”

Yesterday was Nicola’s final day working for EMAS before joining Boston Pilgrim Hospital as paramedic team leader.

She said: “It has been really nice to finish my time at EMAS by meeting Ray and knowing that I have made a difference to both his and Jennifer’s lives. It is amazing and something I will never forget.”

Lee added: “It’s nice to see a patient doing so well and seeing the difference that we can make.“

For more information on how to spot the signs and symptoms of a heart attack please visit NHS Choices- https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/heart-attack/symptoms/

• 7 Lakes Country Park is the venue of the annual event Rescue Day, which in 2016 raised funds to place community public access defibrillators at the site and in the local area.