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‘My girlfriend and sister saved my life’
12:40pm Wednesday 13th March 2013 in News
IT IS anyone’s worst nightmare – seeing the person you love suddenly collapse and stop breathing right in front of you.
But rather than freeze with shock or crumble with emotion, Jade Abbotts leapt into action to save the life of her girlfriend who stopped breathing for more than 40 minutes.
As each minute passed, Sarah Ritchie was slowly going purple around her lips and throat, but Jade refused to give up, giving her CPR until finally she started breathing on her own.
The drama unfolded on Sunday evening, when Sarah and Jade were at the Weston flat of Sarah’s sister, Kelly, watching the football match between Manchester United and Chelsea. Suddenly, without warning, Sarah, 27, who has suffered from regular seizures for two years, collapsed and, for the first time, stopped breathing completely.
Stunned by what they were witnessing, knowing that she had never stopped breathing before and fearing they could be losing her, Kelly called 999 and with guidance from the ambulance service over the phone, Jade started chest compressions.
With Kelly counting one to four to time Jade’s compressions, they did this 600 times during the 40 minutes until Sarah suddenly regained consciousness and starting breathing by herself.
Jade, 18, from Shirley, said: “I’ve seen her have fits before but she has never stopped breathing so it was pretty shocking and so unexpected. We just had to leap into action if we were going to keep her alive. I have never saved anyone’s life before so I am pretty speechless about it all.
“It was so nerve-racking, knowing that her life was in my hands, but with the help of the ambulance service we just kept going until she was breathing again.”
Kelly, 24, added: “It was all so scary because she was going purple. My heart was pounding, thinking that she wasn’t going to survive. I will always be thankful to Jade for saving my sister’s life.”
Thankfully Sarah made a full recovery from her seizure and will always be thankful to Jade and her sister for saving her life.
Sarah said: “I am so grateful to Jade because I am here today thanks to her. I was lucky she and my sister were there because if they weren’t who knows what would have happened? It is such a massive thing for someone to do for someone else and it just makes me feel that I am loved.”