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Eurocoper 135

Patient Stories

Some of our patients have kindly sent us their stories and have asked us to print them for you to read ...

My Husband

I am writing this story about my husband, who crashed in light aircraft in March 2009. The <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance arrived on the scene very quickly and my husband was airlifted to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford. After stabilisation of spinal fractures, repairs of other less serious fractures and emergency surgery for peritonitis, my husband began his long journey to recovery.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

To survive an air crash is a miracle itself, but to survive and e able to return to normal life is possible only thanks to the quality of medical care received. The need for prompt care and treatment immediately after major trauma is widely acknowledged. This is exactly what my husband received. The speedy response and excellence of care offered by the crew of the Air Ambulance were exemplary and I am sure they contributed to providing the best possible outcome for my husband’s recovery.

Words are totally inadequate in expressing my deep thanks for what the Air Ambulance Crew did. Each day we wake up and remember how supremely lucky we are.

From my husband, my family and from me, thank you all

To the Air Ambulance

I was airlifted recently and am now at home recovering. I am so gratful for the service you provide and would like to thank Mark and Paul, my paramedics, for making my trip bearable with thier cheery banter, and a thankyou to the pilot for such a smooth ride.

Thank you

Natasha's story

I was on my way to pick up a colleague before going to work but had only been in the car for three minutes when I had a head-on collision with a heavy plant lorry.
I have no memory of the day but I have been told what then followed. The emergency services were first on the scene, and comforted me whilst we waited for the Air Ambulance to arrive.
I suffered a grievous blow to the head, resulting in brain trauma; I was therefore airlifted to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford due to their reputation for injuries of this kind. A crucial part of my recovery was getting me to the hospital quickly, as I was also suffering from severe brain swelling and several severed nerves.
Because of the distance from the accident to the hospital I was fully reliant on the Air Ambulance and its speed.
Upon arrival, I was induced into a coma and remained so for 11 days. Eventually I was moved to the trauma ward and stayed there for a further 5 weeks. I also temporarily lost the ability to see, feel, talk and even swallow.
By the time I was well enough to be discharged, doctors told me I was 'a miracle' as there was no way I should have recovered as well as I did, let alone within such a short space of time.
After a long and often painful process I am now as close to 'fully recovered' as I can possibly be, but there is no doubt that my 'miraculous' recovery was in great part down to the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance.
Words will never be enough to show how grateful I am, but from the very bottom of my heart: THANK YOU !

Tom's Story

On May 9th 2009, just minutes after his 4th Birthday Party, our son, Tom, was in collision with an oncoming car. 
We knew immediately that we needed the Air Ambulance and when they arrived the crew took control. They stabilised and sedated Tom for his transfer to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.
The new helicopter enabled his father to fly the 15 minute journey with Tom to hospital, and when they arrived the team of consultants, who had been alerted by the crew, met them at the entrance.
Tom had fractured his skull in three places, suffered bruising to his brain and broken his left femur.
Miraculously, he is recovering extremely well.
He has had the metalwork removed from his leg and has now been discharged by all the consultants.
We really wanted to give something back to the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance, to thank them for saving Tom’s life. We decided to hold an ‘Auction of Promises’ and invite friends over to ‘drinks and eats’ for a fun evening.
Everyone was unbeliveably generous, and we raised a staggering £17,398 !!!
We are so thrilled with the success of our event and excited about being able to hand over such a large cheque to the Air Ambulance, as our way of saying thank you for rescuing our little boy.

A herd of cows and a broken back

One Tuesday in February I decided I would take the dog for an early morning walk, despite it having snowed heavily overnight the morning was bright and sunny.
At approximately 7.30 am I set off on the walk, crossing a field between Great Horwood and Adstock that contained a small herd of cows. Normally the cows took no notice of me or my dog, but on this day they behaved very differently. One cow knocked me down to the ground and another rolled over me, the herd then went into a mini frenzy of noise and trampling. In fear for my life I managed to get to my knees and let out an ear piercing scream which seemed to surprise them, it gave me time to crawl away to the edge of the field. The intense pain I could feel in my back told me I was badly hurt, but my main concern was that I may have suffered internal bleeding and I have a blood disorder that makes it hard for my blood to clot. The only thing left to me to do to survive was to crawl across two more large fields to A422 Buckingham Road.
Luckily some motorists saw me lying on the side of the road and stopped to help, calling an ambulance, the paramedics were very concerned about my back, internal injuries and the risk involved with internal bleeding, so the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance was called which arrived within 15 minutes. At this point I was in deep shock, freezing cold and in a huge amount of pain, but, the paramedics were so kinds, gentle and reassuring and I knew that was going to get the best possible help as quickly as possible.
I was airlifted to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford where it was discovered that my back was in fact broken in tow places, requiring an operation to put two rods either side of my spine.
Thanks to the Thames Valley & Chiltern Air Ambulance service I got the treatment I needed in the best possible time.
Thank you

Milton Keynes

I am writing this story for my Father who had an accident on in October 2008

My father and sister were out on an early morning walk, and whilst crossing a road he was hit by a car.
The emergency services were called and the land ambulance and the Thames Valley & Chiltern Air Ambulance arrived in minutes.
My sister also called my husband who arrived at the scene shortly after, he recalls the Air |mbulance crew were wonderful, keeping him informed at all times what they were doing, working on him for 45 minutes, they then told him they would have to take him to Coventry, although a distance from us at Milton Keynes, it was in fact the best hospital for his injuries, which consisted of: both legs broken, fractures to his spine and head injuries.
Dad was kept in a coma fro a month, when the sedation was reduced he thankfull opened his eyes but his recovery is slow.
We are all unaaminous in our opinion that if the Air Ambulance had not come to Dad's rescue he would not be here today.

Thank you on behalf of all my family


George's story

Having been at Chinnor Bike Dayz on 4th July 09 and speaking with the people from the Air Ambulance-here is George's story:

George was diagnosed with a brain tumor in May 2008, after suffering a Grand Mal seizure at school, he was immediately prescribed medication and an operation was scheduled for end of June. Unfortunately George suffered a further Grand mal on the 20th June and an ambulance was called. First to arrive was a rapid response car followed shortly by the land ambulance (all of whom were fantastic) The lead paramedic decided it would be best for George to be airlifted directly to the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford. The Air Ambulance was called and arrived in minutes. I was amazed and overwhelmed by the pilot and the two paramedics who arrived, their first concern was obviously George but at the same time they were able to reassure me and his dad that things would be ok and talked us through each step as they were seeing to George . We were unable to fly with George (this was before the days of the new EC135) but the knowledge that when I kissed him goodbye he was in complete safe hands has made a lasting impression on me.

Goerge's operation was brought forward and was a complete success!! He has made a full recovery and having decided to defer going to college last September is now starting this year doing what he loves best - dancing!

Thank you! Thank You!


On a Friday in May I was involved in a collision with my car and a lorry. My poor husband was first on the scene as he was following a few hundred yards behind me in his car. I remember nothing of the impact - only briefly opening my eyes to see two inflated air bags. I recall telling someone that my head, chest and arm hurt and then a mention of a helicopter and being very gently carried across to the helicopter. I remember the gentle tilt as it manoeuvered and of very kind voices asking how I was - I reached for someone's hand for comfrot and was given ite.

I am delighted to let you know I was discharged from the hospital with no broken bones or very serious injury.

I am so grateful to all of the emergency services that attended the accident that day and am writing to offer my thanks and gratitude especially to you and your team for such a wonderful service and for such a caring response which  I recognised even through the morphine haze!

Thank you so much with very best wishes from a very lucky lady!

A Thank You from Tring Lakes!

One minute you are out walking happily with your wife, along the path we are very familiar with, next thing I remember is being on board your Air Ambulance soaking wet and very confused. We all realise accidents happen, but it's always someone else! - what a fine balance between happiness/contentment and trauma.
As I have explained to everyone concerned, initially, the response from the general public was outstanding, in particular the first guy on the scene, along with a first aider and many other people that assisted at that crucial time keeping me warm until your people arrived.
Being aware of the area, I must congratulate the pilot for his skill and ability to land his craft in such difficult terrain. Without a doubt the professionalism of him and the rest of the paramedic team saved my life!

The one thing that I am now aware of is....... your reliance on public funding, in order to provide this very important and crucial service. With this mind, I certainly will arrange along with my solicitor to amend my Will, in order to make a significant donation to your valuable service. 

Once again many thanks (seems inadequate in some way).

Les and Ann

My four year old daughter ...

My four year old daughter was admitted to Milton Keynes hospital very poorly with fluid on her lungs and had to be transferred to John Radcliffe.  The air ambulance was called in to help.

I was very upset as I could not go wth her as there wasn't enough space, you didn't have your new ambulance then.  My little girl looked so small wrapped up on the stretcher, but the crew and medical staff were very sympathetic to my distress and looked after her with such wonderful care and attention.

When we arrived at the hospital in our car we saw the crew and they took the time to talk to us and to tell us that our little girl was fine and safe in the ward, playing with a glove one of the crew had blown up to entertain her.

My daughter remembers something of the day, but was not frightened by her experience, which for a poorly little girl, separated from her parents, going on a helicopter with three 'strange men' is quite impressive.  We would like to say a big thank you to the air ambulance for the care they took of our little girl who was only four years old at the time.

Mrs R
Milton Keynes 

Beware of the pressure hose!

"Having cut the grass with my golf course size mower, I thought I would clean it up with the pressure hose.  When finished I stood alongside the mower, on reflection I must have directed the pressure jet on the reverse pedal and as a result ended up on the yard with the machine on my leg which caused multiple breaks to the bones in my lower leg.  Being some distance from the house, may calls went unheard until finally by chance my wife came outside.

The 999 call was made and wthin a short space of time the Air Ambulance arrived and transported me to hospital.  Unfortunately, or fortunately, my journey was a blur because of the morphine administered to help with the pain.

Time has passed, recovery has been good and I can once again cut the grass, but this time I ALWAYS carry a mobile phone!  I owe a great deal of gratitude to the Air Ambulance and crew for looking after me and my speedy transport to the hospital."


Drivers - Always look out for Motorcyclists

"One  sunny afternoon my husband I decided to go out for a ride on our motorcycles.  After a while the occasion arose for me to overtake.  I performed my checks and started to overtake but as I became level with the car the right hand indicator came on and the car pulled out and collided with me.

The next thing I remember was lying in a ditch.  I drifted in and out of consciousness and each time I opened my eyes there were different people around me.   One lady had stopped and was holding a towel to stop the bleeding - thank you whoever you are - then the land ambulance arrived.  Realising the extent of my injuries the air ambulance was called which thankfully arrived within minutes.

Whilst on board the Doctor kept talking to me the whole time.  He repeatedly asked me my name, telling me to stay with him.  Soon we arrived at the hospital and he talked me through the landing where I was whisked off to theatre.  I was asked to sign a consent form in case they had to amputate my leg.

The next day I regained consciousness after a seven hour operation, thankfully with my leg still attached.  I asked what had happened to me - several breaks above and below the knee, broken collar bone and jaw, just for starters.  I had also lost over 6 pints of blood. 

To everyone's surpise I left hospital after just one month, improving with sheer guts and determination.  I still have problems and need to attend clinic, I also have to use a walking stick, but to most people I am a walking miracle.

If it had not been for the paramedics and Doctor and the speed in which the Air Ambulance transported me to hospital, I certainly would have lost my leg and I am sure I might not have been here today to tell my story."

Mrs S


"You carried my wife safely to another hospital when she needed to have an emergency operation.

Thank you so much, and thank you to the paramedics who made my wife feel safe."

Mr T


A Mother's Story

"First day of half term - a lay in - not for my son, he woke screaming from the pain in his head.  I rushed him to Wexham Park Hospital, where immediately Doctors checked him for meningitis and sent him for a CT scan.  This showed that he was in fact having a brain haemorrhage and the bleed was over two lobes of his brain.

Speed was of the essence.  The Air Ambulance was called to transfer him to the Neuro Department at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.  Upon its arrival he was so safely and very carefully loaded into the helicopter along with all the extra equipment.

The journey took 11 minutes, by road it would have taken at least 45 minutes assuming there would be no traffic.  When he arrived a team of Neurosurgeons were ready for him.   The speed and efficiency of the medical team and the air ambulance has enabled my son to make a full recovery.

My family and I must express our deepest gratitude and thanks to all that helped, but a special mention to those wonderful and caring people in the air ambulance.

Mrs WE



  Richards's Story by his wife

Richard was running the Marlow half marathon, when just 100 metres from the finishing line he collapsed in front of me, his sister and youngest daughter.

We rushed to his aid and struggled to get him into the recovery position, two off duty policemen who had run the race behind Richard came to assist us. Despite mouth to mouth resuscitation and heart compressions all efforts to rouse him failed. Attendants from the nearby St Johns Ambulance service provided an oxygen mask and his heart was shocked by a defibrillator. At this stage I honestly thought Richard might die. The next thing I saw was an air ambulance paramedic run from the helicopter which had landed at the finishing line on the school field, he took over from the policemen inserted an airway and secured the oxygen supply. It was decided it would be quicker to airlift him to Wexham Park Hospital rather than take him in a land ambulance. I had not expected to be able to travel with Richard in the helicopter, but this was indeed possible and I felt a huge relief and gratitude to be able to stay with him.

The journey took just over 4 minutes.

The doctors have told me that Richard owes his life to the policeman and the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance service, it looks like he will make a full recovery in time, for which we are extremely grateful.


Richard has startied running again , and later this year hopes to run to raise funds for the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance.