Leisure cen­tre he­roes bring two men back to life

Ormskirk Advertiser - - Front Page - BY CHANTELLE HEEDS chantelle.heeds@trin­i­tymir­ror.com @chantelle­heeds

BURSCOUGH leisure cen­tre staff have been praised for sav­ing the lives of two lo­cal men who col­lapsed and nearly died while play­ing sports.

Pa­tri­cia Caul and her team at Burscough Rac­quet & Fit­ness Cen­tre saved the lives of West Lan­cashire men Tommy Knox, 79, and Ed­die Jones, 57.

In June last year, af­ter his twice­weekly game of bad­minton, Tommy had a heart at­tack and col­lapsed in the chang­ing rooms.

Pat, 55, a duty man­ager at the leisure cen­tre, and her team ar­rived at the chang­ing rooms to find Tommy on the floor, not breath­ing.

Pat suc­cess­fully man­aged to get Tommy breath­ing again by car­ry­ing out CPR and us­ing a de­fib­ril­la­tor.

And in Fe­bru­ary this year, Pat and the team were on hand again to save an­other life when Ed­die Jones had a heart at­tack and col­lapsed at his reg­u­lar in­door foot­ball game.

The team were at the scene quickly and, upon ar­rival, Pat and her team found Ed­die un­con­scious and they man­aged to keep him alive un­til the first re­spon­ders ar­rived.

Pat said: “We’ve got a great team here at Burscough and we re­ally care about the peo­ple who use our cen­tre – some of them feel like mem­bers of the fam­ily.

“So, be­ing able to help peo­ple in this way is some­thing I’m very proud of, but I know for me and the rest of the team here, we just feel we were sim­ply do­ing our jobs.”

Af­ter both oc­ca­sions, the NHS team that ar­rived to deal with both men said that, with­out the Burscough team’s rapid re­sponse, it was very un­likely that ei­ther of the men would still be around to­day.

Since the in­ci­dents, Tommy and Ed­die have been fit­ted with im­plantable car­dioverter de­fib­ril­la­tors (ICD). Th­ese de­vices help peo­ple with ab­nor­mal heart rhythms by giv­ing the heart elec­tric shocks ev­ery time there is an is­sue, caus­ing the heart rate to sta­bilise again.

Ja­son Grice, chair­man of West Lan­cashire Com­mu­nity Leisure, which runs the cen­tre, said: “The trust board was de­lighted to hear about the heroic ef­forts of our em­ploy­ees at Burscough.

“We’re so proud of ev­ery­one’s ef­forts, whether that be our staff’s com­mit­ment to train­ing to deal with this sort of in­ci­dent, or just by keep­ing cen­tres clean and safe places for the com­mu­nity to us - all the great work is pay­ing off.

“Well done to Pat, the man­age­ment team and all oth­ers in­volved. Keep up the good work.”

For­tu­nately, Tommy is back play­ing bad­minton and vis­its the cen­tre a cou­ple of times ev­ery week.

Ed­die, hus­band to Sylvia, has also been re­ferred back to Burscough by his GP, un­der the Ac­tive West Lan­cashire Pro­gramme.

Ja­son said: “It’s great to hear that Tommy and Ed­die are back ‘up and run­ning’ again and en­joy­ing their cho­sen sports – long may they con­tinue to do so!”

Ed­die Jones with Pa­tri­cia Caul and Craig Bax­ter, from Burscough Rac­quet & Fit­ness Cen­tre – who looked af­ter Ed­die and Tommy Knox af­ter they col­lapsed

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