Matt became a patient of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter in July last year. Matt is a quintessential Kiwi; he loves the outdoors and wants to challenge himself in everything he does. Unfortunately, when out paragliding at the Christchurch Gondola, a major accident occurred.
One minute Matt was soaring free as a bird; the next he was crumpled, trapped and seriously injured. Matt crashed feet first into a rock outcrop. The pain, after impact, was excruciating but an adrenaline rush spurred Matt to slap his pocket and feel that his phone was there. He called 111 and stayed on the phone until the rescue helicopter crew arrived. Matt describes the moment he heard the sound of the helicopter blades and the huge surge of relief he felt.
Intensive Care Paramedic’s Shane and Wayne arrived at the scene and could see Matt’s feet were blue, with bone protruding through the skin and his feet. Shane knew time was of the essence.
Matt was in agony; he recalls then falling into a bit of a haze after Shane administered some strong pain relief. Shane worked quickly but cautiously, very concerned about Matt’s injuries and potential complications; the crew then winched Matt up to the rescue helicopter and were at the hospital within 10 minutes.
Matt was advised by the doctor he may never be able to move his legs again. He immediately resolved to not be stuck in a chair for the rest of his life.
Matt’s journey began to recovery began day by day, and eventually step by step. It has been a grueling 8 months multiple surgeries with a lot of time spent in hospital. Matt feels it has been as much a mental battle as a physical one. Matt wants to get on with life and if anything, be stronger.
Without your support, the rescue helicopter would not be able to save patients like Matt. Donate today and help ensure future patients get the life saving care they need.