Mum’s relief as passers-by save boy, 3, who stopped breathing in Belsize Park
PUBLISHED: 11:51 23 October 2015 | UPDATED: 11:51 23 October 2015
A mother has thanked passers-by who helped save her three-year-old son’s life after he stopped breathing, and urged people to learn CPR.
Rachel Morris had taken three-year-old Wilfred to the park last Monday afternoon before calling into the Camomile Cafe in Belsize Park, when he complained of feeling ill.
She said: “He looked at me and said, ‘Mummy, I don’t feel well,’ and so I took him outside. Then he just stopped breathing.
“I put him down on the pavement outside and just screamed for help.
“Passers-by stopped and started helping. I’ve no idea who they are. One person stayed with me and really supported me, and then came to find me in the hospital afterwards, which was amazing.
“But two other people helped with giving him CPR, and I wasn’t able to thank them properly because the whole thing was such a blur.
“There was an Asian man and a young white, British woman who I would really like to thank, because I can’t bear to think what might have happened without them.”
Ms Morris said that someone had called the emergency services when an ambulance happened to pass by and paramedics administered CPR before rushing Wilfred to the nearby Royal Free.
She said: “It’s all so blurred. Four paramedics got there when he wasn’t responding. I looked around and there were clusters of people everywhere.
“It was very frightening, in fact I can’t really think about it, I’ve just blocked it.”
Ms Morris, who runs her own business, said she wants to tell her story to encourage as many people as possible to learn CPR.
“I hope this story acts as a wake-up call, to any parent out there to make sure that they really do know what to do in that situation, so they don’t do what I did, and fall apart. I would have thought beforehand that I might have known how to do CPR, but I totally lost it.”
“I was in such a state. It probably only lasted about five minutes, but it felt like a lifetime, frankly.’’
Wilfred is recovering well at home after undergoing tests to try to discover why he stopped breathing, although it is not believed at this stage that he has any underlying heart problems.
Ms Morris said: “It seems like it was a respiratory problem rather than a heart problem, but we still don’t know why he stopped breathing, and so obviously we are keeping a close eye on him.
“I just want to say a sincere thanks to all those who helped Wilfred.
“We were whisked away in an ambulance, so they must have been left wondering what happened to him. The hospital told us that people were ringing up to check on him, but they couldn’t tell them much, so I hope they read this and realise how grateful we are.”
Ms Morris also paid tribute to the NHS staff who had helped Wilfred, saying they had all been “absolutely amazing”.