It is with immense sadness that we announce that East Midlands Ambulance Service has lost a hugely valued and dedicated colleague this week to COVID-19.
Tony Chadbourne - often known as Chad or Chadders - devoted 23 years to working in the ambulance service and worked in both Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire Divisions.
His career began in 1997 as an Ambulance Technician with the Lincolnshire Patient Transport Service, before moving to the accident and emergency side of the service two years later.
Chad moved to Nottinghamshire division where he qualified as a Paramedic in 2007 and worked as a Team Leader at Beechdale Ambulance Station until he transferred to Newark Ambulance Station in 2017.
Most recently, whilst continuing to respond to patients as a Paramedic, Chad worked as a Clinical Operations Manager based at Newark and his family were very proud that he had been successfully interviewed and promoted to a secondment position of Duty Operations Manager in November. Chad had also recently received his 20 years long service medal at EMAS.
Tribute from Chad’s family
As a family we are absolutely devastated at the loss of our beloved Tony. Everyone who knew him knows he had three major loves in his life: his family and friends; football – travelling to watch Nottingham Forest and England at home and abroad; and his role as a Paramedic.
Tony was without doubt an NHS hero who dedicated his life to his career. As he rose up through the ranks nothing was too much trouble for Tony whose huge heart meant he went above and beyond for his patients, colleagues and friends. He cared deeply for his colleagues who were also some of his best friends – his work family.
Tony was humble to the core; only after the event would we hear about the lives he’d saved, the babies he’d delivered and the absolute commitment he gave to the frontline during 23 years of service.
He was an NHS hero but he was our hero. Our rock. Our beloved son, brother, uncle and friend. Tony has left behind a heart broken family who loved him beyond words. Tony was proud to be part of an extended Polish family and he will be dearly missed by Mimi, Marysia, Darek and all his family in Poland.
The whole family would like to give thanks to all the incredible staff at EMAS, Queen’s Medical Centre and Nottingham City Hospital who cared for Tony and fought so hard to try to save him. We now politely request to be left in peace to grieve and remember Tony for the fun-loving, caring, brave man who was so loved by so many.
Forever in our hearts.
With love from Mum, Martyn, Kate, Oliver, Ann, Iain and Matt.
Richard Henderson, East Midlands Ambulance Service Chief Executive said:
“Losing Chad is incredibly sad, and it’s difficult to find the words to express how colleagues across the service will be feeling as they hear this devastating news.
“My thoughts are with Chad’s family, and his close colleagues and good friends, many of whom will be at work today and over the coming weeks; continuing to provide emergency and urgent care for those who need it.
“The family have consented to the release of this tragic news; however, they do not wish to take part in media interviews and have asked that their right to privacy at this very difficult time is respected. I ask too that my colleagues are respectfully left to grieve in privacy.”
Greg Cox, East Midlands Ambulance Service Nottinghamshire General Manager said:
“Tony (Chad) was a valued and highly regarded member of our team here in Nottinghamshire and his loss will be felt very deeply by us all.
“He touched so many of us in such an unassuming way; a character in his own style but a person who would always consider the thoughts and feelings of others and he cared deeply about his chosen profession.
“A kind and sensitive man with a dry sense of humour. He was respected by all his colleagues who knew he had a stoic determination to help all the patients he served as well as supporting the people he worked with. He will be sorely missed but never forgotten.”
Alastair Smith, EMAS colleague and friend, said:
“Tony ‘Chad’ loved his job and was an excellent Paramedic and Manager. His greatest strength as a Manager was the support he extended to all his colleagues. Nothing was ever too much trouble for Chad and he would often stay after his working hours, to the detriment of his own personal plans, to ensure that his colleagues received the highest level of support possible.
“The heart-breaking news of Chad’s death whilst impacting us all across EMAS, is devastating for his family who have lost their rock. Whilst I know his mum and brother are distraught they are both immensely proud of Tony’s achievements, especially his recent promotion.
“Chad is infamous across Nottinghamshire for an incident he had with a train back in February 2019. Chad was dispatched to Newark train station and after assessing the patient at scene and determining they did not need to attend hospital, Chad helpfully assisted the patient back onto the train. Chad then described his moment of panic when another passenger blocked his exit and soon enough the train was departing Newark station for London, leaving his kit on the platform. In his panic he considered pulling the emergency stop cord, so he could exit the train but instead begged the conductor to make an emergency stop at Grantham station before catching the next train home.
"I will never forget the giggles that came from Chad when he told me he was currently stuck in Grantham and the number of phone calls and messages I received from his colleagues informing me of his mishap. His colleagues at Newark have never allowed him to forget this incident and ensured his office was always kept up to date with the latest train timetables.
“Whilst the story itself has made many laugh and will continue to make people smile, it is fundamentally his loving and caring nature to help anyone that caused this.
“Chad leaves a huge hole in mine and many others lives and he will be truly missed by all that knew him.”