Worcestershire lifesavers to be recognised at awards

Worcester News: Diane Fullerton (left) and Karen Lawrance (right) who have been named as finalists in the Everyday Heroes awards with Chris McDonald whose life they saved. Diane Fullerton (left) and Karen Lawrance (right) who have been named as finalists in the Everyday Heroes awards with Chris McDonald whose life they saved.

TWO Worcestershire heroes will be rubbing shoulders with TV presenter and celebrity Tess Daley as she helps to celebrate the actions of the life saving pair at an upcoming awards ceremony.

Friends and colleagues Karen Lawrance and Diane Fullerton have been shortlisted in the workplace Hero category at the St John Ambulance’s annual award ceremony after they saved the life of Chris McDonald.

The pair were both working at General Dynamics UK in Pershore in May last year when Mr McDonald was visiting the site.

He collapsed and on-site first aiders trained by St John Ambulance, Ms Lawrance, 48, of Worcester, and Mrs Fullerton, aged 49, who lives in Ledbury, came to his rescue.

The couple responded quickly and while others panicked Ms Lawrance and Mrs Fullerton began cardio pulmonary resuscitation, which had no impact on Mr McDonald's vital signs. So they used an automated external defibrillator, keeping him alive until the paramedics arrived.

Two days later, he regained consciousness and spent three weeks in intensive care. He was later diagnosed with a genetic heart defect.

Ms Lawrance said that Mr McDonald's health was the main reward for their actions.

"I was a bit surprised to get the nomination," she said. "It was a shock and a bit embarrassing really. But it is exciting, it's not something that happens everyday.

"Obviously the thing we were most thrilled about was Chris himself pulling through and being so well. He is a young man with a young child and what chokes you up when you think about it is that his child could've lost his dad just before father's day. It's quite emotional really.

"People don't think about that when they think of first aid."

Since the incident the pair no longer work at the firm that nominated them but despite moving jobs Ms Lawrance said she was still a first aider and that she and all her workmates were going to be trained to work a defibrillator.

"I started at my new job at the beginning of this month and we had a meeting and they have voted to get all 11 of us trained to use the defibrillator," added Ms Lawrance. "And I am a first aider here as well."

Both Ms Lawrance and Mrs Fullerton will be heading to London for the awards ceremony on Wednesday, March 26.

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