A DIY enthusiast who became a worldwide sensation after shooting himself through the heart with a nail gun has been handed a special award for his exploits.
Nigel Kirk was handed the coveted Glass Hammer Award by bosses behind the Channel 5 programme DIY Dummies after he was featured on the show nine years on from his near-death experience.
The 62-year-old became a worldwide media sensation after the incident in 2005 when he became famous for being one of the world’s most accident-prone DIY enthusiasts.
He said: “I just went into the bathroom to repair the floorboard, fell down between the wall and the toilet, the gun went off and shot the nail into my chest.
“I tripped over a towel that my daughter had left on the floor.
“My first instinct was to pull it out so I tried to take t-shirt and jumper off but I was unable to do it as they were nailed to my chest.”
After being taken to hospital in Burton, Mr Kirk was transferred by ambulance to Glenfield, where a surgeon told him he was lucky to be alive – with one specialist telling him he ‘could not have been closer’ to death.
As Mr Kirk’s heart was beating while he lay on the hospital bed, the nail was moving up and down with each beat getting further and further into his heart.
He added: “As soon as I came out of hospital I just carried on where I left off and now I have got two nail guns.”
Mr Kirk still has the nail that he shot into his chest.
He said: “I was given the nail as a souvenir – hard to think it has been in my heart.”
The programme makers decided to hand him his award for ‘staring death in the face’ and then also going back to DIY.
He added: “You can’t get more stupid than I have been, can you?”
After the story was broken in the Burton Mail, media organisations across the world flocked to interview him.
He said: “The next day I started getting calls from all the national newspapers. But then I started getting calls from all over the world. I did an interview with Radio Canada and was in papers in Australia.
“One of my friends got a call from someone who used to live in Burton and moved to Australia, and they read all about it.”