‘Proud’ dad saved by retired soldier after sudden fall

Gordon and Ross Abbott
Gordon and Ross Abbott

A retired soldier from Milton Keynes was able to come to his dad’s rescue – just 48 hours after qualifying as a first aid trainer.

Ross Abbott, 42, who trained with St John Ambulance, had to put his newly-learned life-saving skills to the test after his 81-year-old father collapsed.

Gordon Abbott, of Bradwell Village, was unresponsive after suffering a bump to the head after falling in the hallway of his son’s house last month.

Ross said: “I just went into auto-pilot. While an ambulance was called, I ensured his airway was clear and moved him into the recovery position. Thankfully he regained consciousness very quickly and we were able to then prop him up to try and prevent further swelling to his face, which had taken a nasty knock to the cheekbone and eye socket.”

Ross, who served in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kosovo and the first Gulf War as both a musician and an ambulance medic for 24 years, now says he wants more people to learn first aid so they can help others in an emergency.

He said: “While I was treating my dad it didn’t really dawn on me that this was my father as I just automatically applied my knowledge without a second thought. It was only afterwards that I really realised it was my dad that I’d helped in his moment of need.

“This is the point I’d like to get across - if you have life-saving skills you can step in to help someone, and that person may be a loved one, a friend, or even a stranger.

“This incident has heightened my passion for teaching first aid and I’m delighted to be able to pass on these skills to others, so they too can be the difference in a medical emergency.”

Gordon, who used to work as a police constable in Woburn Sands, was taken to Milton Keynes Hospital after suffering serious bruising but it’s not known what caused him to collapse.

Gordon added: “There’s no doubt Ross’ first aid experience came into play that day. He was extraordinarily calm and his help and reassurance supported me until the ambulance came. I’m extremely proud and grateful to him as I think it must be very hard to treat a member of your own family. People tend to think that it won’t happen to them, but it can, so I too would urge others to learn these skills.’

Ross is now passing on his knowledge to others during community and schools courses. Contact ross.ab

bott@sja.org.uk for details.