A father-of-two who suffered 15 cardiac arrests in the space of just a few hours has thanked the ambulance crew who saved his life.
Ian Clark said he feels “lucky to be alive”, and that when he woke up in intensive care he originally thought he had been in a crash.
The 52-year-old forklift driver was at home in Elrick with his wife Carole and his youngest son Kaiden, 12 when he fell ill.
He was just finishing some soup when he experienced his first cardiac arrest.
An ambulance crew from Huntly was dispatched, and the pair – Deborah Cameron and Claire Allan – were given assistance from Aberdeen’s paramedic response unit, manned by Calum Moir.
His eldest son, Connon, 21, performed CPR until the ambulance service’s first crew arrived.
Mr Clark had three cardiac arrests at his house, three in the ambulance and the rest in the accident and emergency department at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary on August 15 last year.
He added: “This all happened in the space of two or three hours. I am 100% thankful to the ambulance service staff.
“I might not be here today if it wasn’t for everyone. There’s nothing in the world I could give back to them – they saved my life.”
Once in hospital, Mr Clark was put in an induced coma and when he woke up he thought he had been in a car crash as all his ribs were broken.
He was whisked into surgery where an ICD (implantable cardioverter defibrillator). If his heart stops, it gives him an electric shock.
He was allowed home two weeks later, where he is continuing to recover.
Area service manager for Grampian, Ewan Murray said: “It is great to hear Ian’s story and how he was assisted by the crew at Huntly, and by the paramedic response unit from Aberdeen.
“Our staff, including our call handlers and dispatchers, are trained to deal with life-threatening situations on a daily basis and they encounter many challenging incidents.
“They do it day in, day out with no expectation of any reward, so to get thanks from Ian is wonderful to hear.”