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‘It was really scary, I thought she was going to die’: Aberdeenshire mum thanks Asda staff after daughter, 2, had seizure in store

A collage of Penny and the Asda staff in Portlethen.
Staff members at ASDA Portlethen went "above and beyond" to help when little Penny fell ill in store.

An Aberdeenshire mum feared her two-year-old daughter was going to die after going unconscious and turning pale during a seizure in a supermarket – until hero staff intervened to help.

The parent was shopping when the toddler fell ill and turned a “funny colour”.

Larissa Thompson was just finishing up her shop when her daughter, Penny, started to make a “really funny noise”.

She then realised the tot’s temperature was rising and she was suffering from a seizure in the Asda store in Portlethen.

Miss Thomson said: “I picked her up out of the trolley and she had gone a really funny colour. Penny has a history of intense febrile convulsions and can stop breathing at times. I felt how hot she was so started to strip her down.”

Portlethen staff rushed to help

After a customer went to find help, staff members Joy Johnson, Nikki Milne and Michelle Stewart rushed to the distressed mum’s aid.

They took the pair into a consultation room where Ms Johnson, who is a first-aider, decided to call an ambulance.

Miss Thomson added: “Penny kept coming in and out of consciousness. It was really scary, I thought she was going to die.

Asda in Portlethen. Photo: Chris Sumner/DCT Media

“Joy said she wasn’t happy and phoned for an ambulance and stayed with us until it arrived.”

The service leader and first-aider explained that when the tot started drifting in and out of consciousness she thought it would be best to phone for an ambulance.

She said: “When I first got to Larissa, Penny didn’t look too bad. Her mum had stripped her off and was cooling her down with water.

“After about five minutes she started to drift in and out of consciousness and was terribly pale. At that point, I suggested ringing an ambulance especially as Penny had a history of febrile convulsions.”

Asda staff thanked for ‘amazing’ effort

Penny was taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary after the seizure at Asda in Portlethen and after being checked over was allowed home that night.

Miss Thomson has thanked the Asda staff members for their “amazing and kind” efforts.

She said: “Joy could see that I was under a lot of stress, but she just kept calm. She was holding Penny and was just so lovely.

“I’d just like to thank Joy and everyone from the bottom of my heart for what they did. They were amazing – such lovely ladies.”

Store manager, Martin Green, has commended the staff members for going “above and beyond” to help the tot.

He said: “We are all very proud of Joy, Nikki and Michelle. They just did what they had to do with no fuss and just got on with it.

“Their actions went above and beyond and we are all glad to hear that Penny is doing well.”

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