'I thought he'd died' - Man's life saved by 27 minutes of CPR
PUBLISHED: 09:25 16 January 2020 | UPDATED: 10:42 16 January 2020
Pub-goers who spent 27 minutes giving CPR to a football fan who collapsed in gridlock traffic have been thanked for saving his life.
Laura Stone and Iain Jennings were in the Fat Cat and Canary Pub when they sprang into action to save Bill Artis after he passed out in the passengers seat returning from a Norwich City game.
Ms Stone had finished work and had taken a sip of her wine when someone ran in saying someone had collapsed.
She said: "We were doing CPR, mouth to mouth, chest compressions. We really did not think we were going to get him back. It's the first time I've been called into action."
Mr Jennings, a former volunteer British Red Cross ambulance crew member, had been having drink with friends.
He said: "Laura and I performed CPR on him whilst others spoke to his partner and the ambulance service over the phone.
"When they did arrive we continued CPR whilst the crew put in drugs and attached their defib, after a few shocks and what seemed like an age Bill started breathing again on his own."
The pub is looking to raise more than £1,000 to install a defibrillator.
Mr Artis had been at the Canaries match against Tottenham Hotspur on December 28 with his partner Glynys Gedge and had an hour earlier seen paramedics saving the life of 71-year-old Tony Kirkwan.
The couple, who are from Gorleston, are season ticket holders and were sitting in gridlock traffic when the 55-year-old passed out.
Ms Gedge said: "We watched the game and another chap had a heart attack in the ground. We were unaware that would be us in an hour. He said "I think I'm going to pass out" and his head flopped back against the head rest, he made a snore noise.
"I was shouting his name, he made this funny snoring hoise, I hit his arm and I was really shouting at him. He then slumped forward and there was no more noise, there wasn't anything, no noise, no movement. It might sound dramatic but I thought Bill had died next to me."
His partner was able to drive into the Thorpe Road pub's car park and raise the alarm which brought people outside to offer assistance.
Two police cars, one ambulance, two paramedics and one critical care car attended the scene. Ms Gedge said: "27 minutes is how long everybody worked to keep Bill alive. It's a huge amount of time.
"The care he received in the car park by everybody, lots of people were helping, holding out lights because it was dark. The doctor said the care he received it really ensured Bill made a good recovery."
He was taken to Norfolk and Norwich Hospital and underwent an operation to remove a blood clot and insert stents.
Mr Artis was taken into intensive care and spent a week in hospital before returning home.
Once he has made a recovery, the couple say they will visit the pub to thank everyone in person for their help.