6th Jul, 2020

Fans and officials rallied round a when lifelong Alvechurch supporter collapsed at Satruday's match

Correspondent 27th Dec, 2017

THE family of an Alvechurch FC supporter who collapsed at the ground has praised the hero medical team and fans who helped to save his life.

Rick Edwards, a long-term fan who follows the Church home and away, suffered a cardiac arrest before the kick-off on Saturday (December 23) ahead of the game with Gresley.

While the paramedics, an ambulance crew and an Air Ambulance, headed to the Lye Meadow Ground, club physio Kevin March plus fan Martin Bassett, assisted by Jude Yates, were able to use a defibrillator to keep Rick’s heart beating as he went in and out of consciousness.

Rick’s daughter Sam tweeted her grateful thanks as her father was being treated in the Alexandra Hospital.

“Thank you so much for saving my dad’s life. We are so grateful that you were there and we will never be able to thank you enough.

“He’s still confused but the docs are really pleased with his progress. They’re putting him on dialysis tonight as his kidneys aren’t functional by properly but that’s normal after a CA. Hopefully he’s on the mend.”

Alvechurch chairman Richard Thorndike praised the reactions of the staff and revealed they had only bought the lifesaving defibrillator in the last month.

“The FA had a special promotion to buy the defibrilator and because the club is such a part of the community we felt it we something we needed to have,” said Thorndike.

“Saturday showed just how important it is.”

“Everybody knows Rick. He has supported the club since he was a boy and his dad Derek was another stalwart supporter of the club.

“The way everyone rallied to the situation was amazing. I can’t praise them enough. The paramedics said afterwards that their actions definitely helped to save his life.

“All our prayers are with Rick and that he recovers as soon as possible.”

Both Kevin March and Jude Yates are parents of Alvechurch players, Josh and Luke respectively.

Referee Richard Gardner abandoned the game after consulting with the two club’s management teams.

“It should be noted that the response and actions of all that treated the man were absolutely amazing,” he said.

“They gave him the very best chance they could for him to survive this horrendous moment. All club officials, staff and players acted with great respect for the seriousness of the incident.”

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