Student nurse wins top award

Christopher Worth receives his award

Christopher Worth, a trainee nurse from Southampton, has been named First Aider of the Year in Hampshire for going to the aid of an elderly man in cardiac arrest.

Lifesaving action

The St John Ambulance first aider was presented with a silver cup by Dame Mary Fagan, Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire, at the charity's annual awards night at the Great Hall in Winchester.

Christopher’s story began on his 21st birthday when he found the man collapsed on a road in the Shirley area of the city.

I’m just pleased I was in the right place, at the right time.

Christopher Worth
First Aider of the Year, Hampshire

He assessed the situation, asked his mum to call 999 and got on with giving heart massage (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation CPR) and rescue breaths (kiss of life). 

Pat Morris, Commander of St John Ambulance, praised his actions: 'He continued CPR for several minutes until the ambulance arrived – you can imagine the intensity and energy involved in this lifesaving action.

'When the paramedics arrived on the scene they were so impressed by his skill that he became part of the team helping to attach the defibrillator that would ultimately power the man’s heart back into a normal rhythm.'

The patient was then whisked off by ambulance to Southampton General Hospital where he was treated in Intensive Care.

Mrs Morris added: 'We would love to know what happened to the patient. We do know he survived the initial trauma of the heart attack because his grateful daughter paid for an anonymous ‘Thank You’ in the Southern Daily Echo with the message – "CPR does work".'

Christopher, now aged 22, said: 'I just went into auto pilot.  I'm just pleased I was in the right place, at the right time.'

St John Ambulance Hampshire also celebrated the 52nd anniversary of Harry Dymond, from Hedge End.

Mr Dymond joined as a Cadet in 1951 and has held many voluntary roles in both Hampshire and nationally. He is now President of St John Ambulance in Bitterne.

As a young man he achieved his Grand Prior Award (a special award for passing 12 subjects by the age of 21) in 1958 which was presented by Princess Margaret.

He has received many national accolades and is a Knight of the Order of St John.

A St John Ambulance cadet from Totton was presented with his Grand Prior Award at the event.

David Larbalestier, a Year 11 pupil from Noadswood School, passed 12 different subjects to earn the award and was chosen to represent Hampshire at a reception at Buckingham Palace earlier this year.

He said:  'When we arrived, we marched through the ground and into the main building– it was absolutely amazing– like nothing I'd seen before.

'Princess Anne came in and walked around our groups and talked to us about various different things. Overall, they day was brilliant, one of the best days I have ever had in my six-year St john career.'