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‘I can’t thank you enough’

By Fiona Reid
‘I can’t thank you enough’

A GROUP of Lockerbie neighbours who saved the life of a man suffering a heart attack have been praised as ‘amazing’.

Steve Cowie, 62, was walking the dog with wife Fiona just before 9 am last Saturday, February 13, when he took ill in Livingstone Place.

But help was swiftly at hand when residents rushed out of their houses to his aid.

Fiona said: “People came to the rescue and saved his life. It was absolutely amazing.”

Describing how events unfolded, she said: “The two of us went for a normal walk. We had to stop while he sat on a wall as he felt breathless but he wanted to carry on.

“We got to Livingstone Place and he started holding on to someone’s gate post. I heard him groan then he literally just flew over and his head bounced off the ground like a football.

“He was clutching his chest and I knew immediately.”

She dialled 999 and as she was screaming for help, others appeared.

Fiona said: “I did not know any of them. I am so grateful, if it was not for them he would have died.

“Julie Carruthers, a nurse, was the first person. She came out of her house in her nightie and started CPR.

“Kenny Henry was walking his dog nearby and heard me screaming, he came round, saw Steve on the ground and took over CPR. The two of them worked on him tirelessly for 20 minutes. They seriously saved his life.”

She also thanked Maureen Armstrong who took over the 999 call; Jen McLeod who drove in her

pyjamas to get one of the town’s defibrillators; Deborah Bodell who brought blankets and drinks; Claire and Troy Beattie for directing traffic; Stuart Garner who took her dog away; and Mike Trant for looking after her.

Fiona added: “Every one of those people worked as a team. They were all looking after me then two ambulances came and they were fantastic.

“I can’t say thank you enough. Every single person could not have been nicer and could not have done any more to help.”

Due to covid Fiona could not go in the ambulance so was taken to Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary by friend Gordon Pringle. She got to see her husband briefly but he was sedated at that point and then taken to intensive care.

Fiona has not been allowed in since and said: “He went to Glasgow last Friday for an angiogram and is now waiting for a bypass operation.

“I am sitting at home not able to see him and we can only talk on the phone.”

Married since 2000, they have never been apart and she can’t wait to get him back home, adding: “My memory of seeing him on the ground is horrible.”

She has since been back to Livingstone Place to thank everyone and give out flowers and chocolates and said: “I have made new friends out of it.”

The Cowies have only lived in Lockerbie for three and a half years, but Fiona said: “Moving here was the best choice we ever made. The folks of Lockerbie could not be nicer.”

Dumfries and West, Front, News

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