Former patient takes on the Great North Run for the charity that saved his life
Five years ago Richard McMann was involved in a life-threatening accident, suffering a traumatic brain injury, two epileptic seizures and a broken arm. Richard made a remarkable recovery and, in September 2018, will be taking on the Great North Run to raise vital funds for Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance which came to his rescue that day.
When Richard, from Darlington, embarked on a London to Paris cycling challenge with his friends Jon and Louise, he could never have anticipated how his day was going to turn out. The team made their way south from London Bridge, reaching Warlingham in Surrey where they found themselves at the summit of Succombs Hill – a notoriously steep hill running down to their hotel for the night.
Unfortunately, Richard never completed the descent and fell from his bike halfway down the hill. A Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance crew was called and the medical team (consisting of a doctor and a paramedic) began treating Richard at the roadside.
Richard was put into an induced coma by the medical team in order to prevent further swelling to his brain as a result of his head injury. They decided he should be flown to King’s College Hospital in London, a major trauma centre capable of providing the specialist care that Richard needed. He remained in an induced coma for several days before he was taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough to continue his recovery.
Having made such an exceptional recovery, Richard said “I am so grateful for the expert treatment I received from the crew of Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance. Without their fast response and treatment, I don’t know if I would be here today. I am also really thankful to the dedicated teams at King’s College Hospital and James Cook University Hospital.”
In May 2018, the charity welcomed Richard to their base at Redhill Aerodrome where he was reunited with Ben Macauley, the paramedic who attended to him on the day of his accident. Richard was excited to share with Ben his plan to take on the Great North Run alongside his cousin in September, to fundraise for the charity that saved his life. As if this wasn’t enough, Richard is also in the process of setting up his own charity which aims to help people who have suffered a traumatic brain injury.
As Richard is from the North East of England he is asking the people of Kent, Surrey and Sussex, who could benefit from the services of the charity at any time, to get behind him and sponsor him. Richard says “None of us ever know when we might need this vital service and I really hope that I can raise some funds, and awareness, for this amazing charity which saved my life.”
Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust, Rochester City Airport, Maidstone Road, Chatham, Kent ME5 9SD
Charity no. 1021367 • A company limited by guarantee • Registered in England and Wales • Company no. 2803242
Air Ambulance Promotions Ltd • A wholly owned subsidiary company of Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust • Charity no. 1021367
Registered in England and Wales • Company no. 2674568