By Craig Martin
A young boy from Buckingham, England, whose life was saved by two of his pals has returned to school for the first time since collapsing from a heart attack on the rugby pitch.
Will Edgar-Gibson, 15, was fighting for his life having just scored a try in a PE lesson rugby match at his Buckingham primary school, but quick-thinking team mates Chris Collins and Matt Grenham, both 15, rushed to Will’s side and began performing CPR.
The pair, who are Cadets (the British version of JROTC), and hope to join the forces after school, stayed by Will’s side until medical helicopters arrived to whisk him to hospital for emergency surgery.
Will returned to school on Monday but needed a day off on Tuesday to recover from the excitement. “I’ve had a lot of people ask me how I am, which is nice. I met the guys as soon as I could to say thank you.” Gibson said. “Apparently I’ve had a heart condition since I was born but I’ve had it so often, I’ve just found it normal, and hadn’t noticed anything.”
Matt Wardle, who was teaching the sophomore PE lesson, called the ambulance and worked with the life-saving duo to give Will a chance of survival. Wardle was quoted as saying, “These boys were just incredibly brave and confident.They are a real credit to the school. They were very calm and mature about it and the fact we have two students confident enough to be in that situation, speaks volumes about their character. It’s not something you drive into work expecting to happen but we are incredibly proud of how these boys acted and delighted Will has made a full recovery.”
The young boys have been the talk of the school since the incident just before Christmas and Matt, who hopes to join the RAF when he leaves school, said, “The paramedics wouldn’t have arrived in time, quite simply. Quite a few people have come up to me to say well done for doing it and being in the cadets definitely gives you useful life skills.”
Will spent 10 days at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford where he needed emergency surgery to freeze an abnormal heart pathway. He was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, an abnormally fast heartbeat, and had a heart monitor implanted.
Chris and Matt were honored in assembly by the school who presented the pair with certificates for their heroic support.