26 June 2022

Ambulance crew who helped save a man’s life on Salisbury Plain are guests of honour at wedding celebrations

Wiltshire crew members, who helped save a man’s life on Salisbury Plain last year, were the guests of honour at his recent wedding celebrations.

Student Paramedic, Fred Fox and Emergency Care Assistant, Matt Bone, from the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT), joined Mick Culley and his bride, Kerry, at their wedding blessing in Lincolnshire last weekend.

Mick, 69, from Hogsthorpe, near Skegness had a brain haemorrhage while on holiday in Wiltshire with his then-girlfriend, Kerry, last May.

Shortly after they arrived at Salisbury Plain, Kerry said, “He was staggering across the car park and I knew something was very wrong, so I dialled 999 for an ambulance.”

Fred and Matt, based at Salisbury Ambulance Station, responded to the call. They assessed Mick and recognised the potential seriousness of his condition.

“They kept the whole situation calm, got him on a stretcher and into the ambulance,” said Kerry.

“The next thing I knew I was driving to the hospital, not knowing whether he was alive or dead,” she said.

When Kerry arrived, she discovered Fred waiting for her to give her an update on Mick’s condition.

Further assessments at the hospital showed that Mick needed a specialist operation, at Southampton General Hospital. Fred and Matt continued to care for Mick by transferring him there.

Thankfully, the operation was a success and Mick was eventually transferred again, this time closer to his home to recover in Pilgrim Hospital, Boston.

Mick said, “I can’t thank everybody enough – we don’t have enough praise for what Fred and Matt did. Their quick actions saved my life.

“We wanted to take the opportunity to thank Fred and Matt by inviting them to the blessing.”

Kerry added, “If it weren’t for Fred and Matt, our life together could not have happened. We are just so grateful to them.”

Jane Whichello, Wiltshire’s Deputy County Commander for the SWASFT, said, “We are all very proud of Fred and Matt; they demonstrated such care and compassion.

“When we respond to calls, we don’t just care for the patient, we often care for the wider family too and this is just what Fred and Matt did for Mick and Kerry.

“Fred has since qualified as a paramedic and I couldn’t be prouder.”

Fred said, “Mick could still talk when we arrived on scene, but he was displaying all the red flags for a bleed on the brain. We knew we had to act fast.

“Kerry turned up at the ambulance station a couple of days after the incident to say thank you and to give us an update on Mick.

“Then sometime later, out of the blue, came the invitation to the wedding blessing. It doesn’t happen very often. I have been in the ambulance service for six years and this is the first one I’ve had, so we were really chuffed to get it.”

Matt said, “I just feel so pleased that we were able to get to Mick in time and provide him with the help that he needed.

“Joining him and Kerry at their wedding blessing was such an honour and we had a fantastic time. We wish them a happy and healthy life together.”

Mick and Kerry met on March 18 2021 via the local parish council. They married in October 2021. Fred and Matt attended their wedding blessing at St Mary’s Church, Hogsthorpe, on Saturday 14th May.

Please only call 999 in a life-threatening emergency, for non-urgent medical advice and support please call 111 or visit your GP or local pharmacy.

Written by
Beth Doherty
View all articles
Written by Beth Doherty