Tuesday, February 14

Heart Saving Coincidences

two hearts saving each other

I came across this story on the Wirral News and it reminded me how my friends had a similar experience. In the case mentioned in the Wirral's story they call it a freak coincidence. I'm not sure if this is an accurate description, it's more of a case of one good turn deserving another.

On Merseyside a son-in-law saved his father-in-law's life following a heart attack. Just months later it was the other way round with the father-in-law saving his son-in-law's life, when he too had a heart attack. Both times they were in the same garden doing a makeover.

The father-in-law, Peter Smith, age 67, told the Wirral News "We are so lucky to be alive. If Tony (the son-in-law) had not been there, I probably wouldn’t be here. I was up a tree when I suddenly felt sick. I came down and told Tony I was going inside for a drink of water. As soon as I got into the house I collapsed. I had pains shooting across my chest, I couldn’t shout ‘Tony’ but managed to call him on my mobile. He came running in and that’s all I remember."

Peter then explained what happened a few short months later: "Tony and I resumed our makeover on the garden. I just heard a thump behind me. I turned and saw Tony on the ground. There was no warning, nothing, he didn’t say anything – he just went down like a sack of potatoes. I felt his heart and it had stopped so I started CPR. After a few seconds it started again and he started breathing again. The paramedics gave him oxygen, but then his heart stopped again so they used a defibrilator."

Their general opinion is that without the others intervention they may well not be here today to tell the tale.  Saving each others lives has also brought them closer together.

In the case of my friends it was wife saving husband and then husband saving wife.

The wife, Jean, woke up in bed one morning and her husband was suffering a heart attack.  She told us that she didn't know what to do but she screamed at him that he mustn't die and started pounding his chest.  He had stopped breathing but somehow, because of Jean's instinctive actions, he started to breath again.

By this time their daughter was awake and Jean shouted to her to dial 999 - the UK emergency number. When the ambulance arrived the paramedics said that Jean had saved Norman's life.

A few months later, again in bed, Jean had a heart attack and this time it was Norman's turn to do the life saving. He saved her before calling an ambulance.

They are now both well, though Jean has been fitted with a pacemaker in case her heart should need any assistance.

As they joke, their bed has certainly seen some unexpected action!

In life good turns and help seem to be returned, though not always in such dramatic ways. When I was a child I remember my mother telling me this after I asked her why she had bothered to help someone. "Because some day you might need help," she answered. It's something that has always stuck with me.

See also:
Circles Of Goodness
Woman Donates A Kidney To A Stranger

Bookmark and Share


  1. Dramatic stories, Mike, and good ones for valentine's day!

  2. Wow. These stories really show our connection to each other.

    However, that's not the kind of action I want to see in my bed.

    Happy Valentine's Day.

  3. Thanks Trish.

    And thanks Therese. Yea, but you can't sleep or watch TV all of the time ..

  4. ["Because some day you might need help,"]
    I've heard my own Mom say this more times than I can remember. I must have been a needy child. Good one Mike.