Woman thanks ‘magnificent’ ambulance service and kindness of strangers after Willingdon incident

An Eastbourne woman has paid a heartfelt thank you to ambulance teams and strangers who came to her aid at the weekend.

Monday, 30th September 2019, 12:44 pm
Freda and Dibley are the best of friends

Four ambulances and a polaris vehicle were sent to rescue Freda Parker after she broke her hip in a nasty fall near Butts Brow on Saturday (September 28).

See our initial story here: Ongoing emergency incident in Willingdon

The 66-year-old from Old Town said, “All the people who stopped to help, plus the ambulance crews, were magnificent.

Emergency services on scene, photo by Dan Jessup

“I’d like to say a heartfelt thanks to everyone. I was screaming with pain as they tried to move me but all were never less than kindness and concern.”

She said, “I would love to thank them all personally – from the runner who heard my shouts for help to the man who stayed with me the whole time, plus the assorted dog walkers who sorted out my boy for my trip to hospital.

“How lovely to see local people at their very best, along with the first class ambulance crews. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

Freda had been walking her dog Dibley on a steep chalk path when she slipped and fell suddenly at about 9.45am that day.

Photo by Dan Jessup SUS-190930-102604001

She said, “When it’s wet it’s treacherous, I had a hiking stick with me. My footing just went. I fell down so hard I knew as soon as I’d fallen. I was in so much pain.”

Without a mobile phone she was unable to call an ambulance herself, and started shouting for help in the hope a passerby would hear her.

“There was a man who was running with his dog and heard me yelling,” Freda said, “He came, another man came and stayed with me the whole time. I think his name was Steve.”

As the area was so inaccessable, the ambulance service had to send a HART (hazardous area response team) to help get her off the track, onto a stretcher, and into another ambulance. She was then taken to Hastings’ Conquest hospital for further treatment.

Poor Dibley, a well-known local therapy dog, wasn’t sure what was going on. Freda said, “He was very worried, he found it all a little bit strange.

“They found a dog walker to take him to my dog walker to look after him. How kind is that?”

She says she believes she will be in hospital a few days until she can go home and reunite with Dibley.