Michelle’s Ultra Fundraising Challenge for Magpas
Fundraising for Magpas Air Ambulance
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On 20 January 2024, Michelle Berry will be tackling the ‘Peddars Way Trail 48 mile Ultra Marathon’ to raise funds for Magpas Air Ambulance.
The Peddars Way runs from Knettishall Heath in Suffolk to Holme-next-the-sea on the north Norfolk coast. In order to qualify for a medal, competitors have to complete the 48 mile route within 12 hours. To find out more about the race, visit: https://positivestepspt.co.uk/events/peddars-way-ultra-marathon2024
I have a very personal reason for fundraising which will hopefully help me get through when the going gets tough!... Before signing up for this, the most I've run is 18 miles so this will be an *enormous* challenge for me, but I’m ready to take it on. I’m fundraising for Magpas so they can continue to provide a service to anyone who suddenly finds themselves in an emergency medical situation like we did this year. Magpas is a registered charity and relies entirely on our donations.
On 20 June 2023 we unexpectedly, and urgently needed help when Allistair suffered a cardiac arrest. It was 5.30am, when I was woken by his body jolting - his heart had stopped beating and he gave his last breath. He was gone.
With the help of the 999 call handler, I gave CPR, which I did for what was probably only 15 mins but felt like forever. I was so grateful when ambulance crews took over and they were able to restart his heart using a defibrillator. The Magpas doctor and critical care paramedic arrived and placed Ali in an induced coma (to help protect his brain from further trauma) and once stable enough, we went on blue lights to Papworth Hospital. The cardiologists discovered his cardiac arrest had been caused by a heart attack and they put in stents to open his arteries again. On the third day he was brought out of his coma, it was a huge relief that neurologically he’d come through it well, and after week in hospital he came home.
Without the excellent emergency medical care we received that day, the outcome probably wouldn’t have been so good. Only 1 in 10 people survive an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.
A few months on now and Ali’s doing well. At the time of his cardiac arrest he was undoubtedly the fittest he’d ever been in his life which helped his survival. His event came totally out of the blue with no prior symptoms, so recovering from the mental aspect of it all will take more time.
So that’s why I’m passionate about helping Magpas, so they can continue to operate and help other people. If you could sponsor my challenge I’d be forever grateful. Don’t forget to if you’re a tax payer to add GiftAid to your donation – they’ll get another 25% on top of your donation!
With love and thanks, Shell x
To the amazing wonderfully calm 999 call handler, the Ambulance crews who arrived so quickly and gave initial life-saving, and to Adam Johnson (Leading Operations Manager, East of England Ambulance Service) for such a great team. A huge thank you to Rich Booker (Magpas Doctor), Thomas Giddings (Magpas Critical Care Paramedic), Dr Denise Braganza (Consultant Cardiologist, Papworth), our friend and neighbour Karl Mackender who kept me going through those critical first few hours, to all our friends and family who have supported us the last few months and everyone at our running club (Ely Runners) who continue to be the most wonderful support imaginable. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!
To find out more about Magpas Air Ambulance, visit:
Magpas Air Ambulance serves the communities of Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and across the East of England and is dispatched by both the East of England and the East Midlands Ambulance Service Trusts—caring for a population of over 10 million. Their advanced medical team combines the skills of a senior doctor and critical care paramedic on every shift. All members of the team are specially trained in Pre-Hospital Emergency Medicine and support the ambulance service by bringing advanced medical care directly to their patients’ side when time is of the essence.