“I must have had angels watching over me” - man left in coma after Heartsease tower block fall recovering at home

Ashbourne Tower fifth floor resident Jason Jay who was seriously injured after a fall from his balco

Ashbourne Tower fifth floor resident Jason Jay who was seriously injured after a fall from his balcony.PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY - Credit: SIMON FINLAY

After a 60 foot fall from a Heartsease tower block which left him fighting for life in a coma, Jason Jay has today thanked two men who rushed to help save him.

And the 40-year-old, now recovering at home, is urging others suffering from depression to open up about their problems.

Mr Jay, also known as J-Jay, had battled with ongoing mental health problems before the incident on January 24.

As neighbours became aware of what happened, two came to Mr Jay's aid until paramedics could arrive.

He was taken to Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital before being transferred to Addenbrooke's with a suspected head injury.

Waking from a month-long coma, he was released from hospital three weeks ago and is on the mend after fracturing multiple vertebrae and breaking one arm. Landing on his hips, Mr Jay now has 16 metal rods in his back and uses a catheter bag.

Nursing staff from St Martin's Trust provide daily care in helping him go to the chemist and use the toilet.

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'When I woke up I knew what had happened to me because my back wasn't working properly,' he explained. 'My vertebrae were shattered and I am now being held together by a lot of metal plates.'

While he had been suffering from severe depression at the time of the incident, Mr Jay says he was extremely lucky to survive and is thankful to all those who helped his recovery.

'It is only because I landed on the grass and not on the concrete that I am still alive,' he said. 'I have got no recollection. I don't even remember jumping.

'All I remember is waking up in hospital a month later with all the injuries I had sustained. After that I just pieced it together bit by bit.

'I wanted to say to the people who helped me: 'thank you for keeping me alive'. I was lucky and I must have had angels watching over me. 'I would never think of doing that again, not with the injuries I sustained.

'Anyone who's in that situation just need to talk to someone and tell them how you are feeling, or call 999 and tell them to come and help you if you are desperate.

'The main thing is talking about your feelings openly and discussing what is going through their minds and not bottling it up.

'It is bad to bottle things up and just makes things worse in the end. It's not worth it for what it puts you through.

'I am just lucky to be alive. I am happy living here and it is a reminder of what happened, but there is talk about moving me somewhere to new accommodation in the city.'

Mr Jay is working with the Norfolk Recovery Project to help improve his prospects and work through residual issues.

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