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‘Dad would be so proud’

James Hope-Gill and Helen Evans met retired footballer Fabrice Muamba, who suffered a cardiac arrest on the field earlier this year, at the star-studded awards.

James Hope-Gill and Helen Evans met retired footballer Fabrice Muamba, who suffered a cardiac arrest on the field earlier this year, at the star-studded awards.

Four campaigners who have fundraised to provide life-saving equipment at local football grounds in memory of a referee have been honoured.

In March, Roger Evans, of Dronfield, suffered a cardiac arrest after blowing the final whistle at a football match.

Despite attempts to resuscitate the 59-year-old, he sadly died at the ground – which didn’t have a defibrillator.

Following Roger’s death, his daughter Helen teamed up with football chief James Hope-Gill, journalist Bob Westerdale and funeral director Roy Cutts to embark on a fundraising mission which has helped buy more than 20 defibrillators to prevent further tragedies at small sports grounds in north Derbyshire and Sheffield.

The fundraisers were recognised at a glitzy ceremony last week when they clinched the St John Ambulance first aid champion award.

Judge Richard Evens said: “Their work is a fantastic example of turning a tragic incident into something uplifting and memorable.

Helen, 33, said her dad would be proud.

Meanwhile, Somercotes firm Sercel England was presented with the first aid award for manufacturing, processing and production.

The business has an impressive eight on-site first aiders.

Since the start of 2011, three life-saving members of staff have attended more than 230 incidents – including 12 cardiac arrest cases.

Trevor James, environmental health and safety manager at Sercel, said: “It’s brilliant to have our efforts recognised.”

 

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