A former regional daily editor saved by a passer-by after suffering a cardiac arrest in the street says he has been given “a second chance at life.”
Terry was walking through Ipswich when he fell to the floor after going into cardiac arrest, but lifesaver Lisa Perry, who teaches CPR, used a defibrillator to shock his heart back into action before carrrying out chest compressions.
The former news chief was rushed to Ipswich Hospital where he was stabilised before being blue-lighted to Papworth Hospital, near Cambridge, where he was fitted with a stent.
Terry has only now spoken out about the incident which took place 10 weeks ago, and has vowed to learn CPR himself.
Now fully recevered, he has also offered to to pay £1,500 for a new public defibrillator in Ipswich after hearing one had been stolen.
Terry told his old paper the EADT: “I would just like to say how grateful I am to the people who saved me, to Lisa and the paramedic who I would really like to talk to one day. I would also like to thank the heart surgeons at Papworth and Ipswich Hospitals.
“But just saying thank you feels dreadfully inadequate. They have given me a second chance at life and I am eternally grateful.
“I’d like to say how important I now know having first aid skills are. If I came across somebody lying there in desperate trouble I wouldn’t know what to do. I am going to enrol in a course to learn these skills.”
Of his offer to pay for a new defibrillator, Terry added: “I heard the news of the theft and my initial reaction was what a stupid, senseless act of gratuitous vandalism. It is to no monetary value and could cost someone their life.
“As I know more than most people, they save people’s lives. I have offered to pay the money to replace the defibrillator and case. It is the least I can do under the circumstances.”
Mrs Perry told the EADT that helping Terry had been the first time her CPR training had come into use.
She said: “It was very lucky – I would usually have driven to work – on this particular day I thought it was such a beautiful day that I would walk.
“It is very important people learn CPR, even just to recognise when someone is having a heart attack. I am a trained swimming instructor so have known CPR for 23 years. But this is the first time I have had to actually use it.”