Life-saver Liam’s special award

Bob Williams, Chief Executive, North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust along with Liam Wilkinson and his girlfriend.
Bob Williams, Chief Executive, North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust along with Liam Wilkinson and his girlfriend.

A heroic high street rescuer, who brought a collapsed man back from the dead with a heart defibrillator, has received an ambulance service award.

Liam Wilkinson, 26, was using one of the life-saving machines for the first time when he sprung into action in Chorley town centre.

Brian Miller, 80, of Chorley, suddenly dropped to the floor gasping for breath right in front of him on New Market Street.

He began to turn blue and his heart stopped.

Liam, who lives with his parents on Sutton Grove, Chorley, used the first aid skills he had learned as a scuba diving master to help the stricken pensioner, who was gasping for air.

He started CPR and when two nearby PCSOs turned up with a defibrillator, applied the machine to Mr Miller before an ambulance arrived.

Mr Miller was rushed to Chorley Hospital and made a recovery after spending time on the coronary ward.

The incident happened in March.

And Liam has now been recognised by the North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

More than 30 organisations were awarded for raising awareness of heart health basic life support and defibrillators in their local communities at the trust’s fifth CardiacSmart awards.

The event, held at Macron Stadium, Bolton, also saw nine Life Savers recognised who have made outstanding efforts to save the life of a person suffering a cardiac arrest.

CardiacSmart is part of the Chain of Survival Partnership which aims to extend the network of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) available in the community for use on people who suffer cardiac arrest outside hospitals.

The initiative increases the number of people in the North West who can provide basic emergency life support and use an Automated External Defibrillator.

Andrew Redgrave, community engagement manger, community resuscitation team said: “The CardiacSmart Award encourages people to take action and recognises those who are working for safe and healthy communities – where we all want to live and work.”

The awards were sponsored by Physio Control and supported by: Starbucks, CardiacScience, Millie’s Trust, SADS UK, Scots Mid, The Adam Appeal, Bolton Wanderers Community Trust, Lancashire Defibrillator Campaign and Hand on Heart.

Liam, who works for his family’s firm, Aztec Domestics, Pall Mall, Chorley, said: “I didn’t expect an award. I just did what anybody else would have done.”

And he said he still stays in touch with the Miller family.

“We see him all the time,” said Liam.

“We went to his wedding anniversary a couple of months ago. It’s nice to keep in touch.”

Mr Miller attended the awards ceremony.

After the incident earlier this year, Mr Miller’s son Mark, 47, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to bits that Liam reacted the way he did, and not only that, he had medical training with his scuba diving.

“And everybody else who helped and the fact there was a defibrillator.”