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Lifesaving bid backed by defib campaign mum

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: May 09, 2014

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A MOTHER who launched a bid to bring lifesaving equipment to an East Staffordshire village after nearly losing her son following his collapse at school with a heart problem has backed the Mail’s Stay Fit, Stay Alive campaign.

Elisabeth Cunliffe began her ‘Saving Hearts of Barton’ campaign last year after she nearly lost her son William after he collapsed at Thomas Russell Junior School.

Her efforts have helped pay for two defibrillators – one at the school and another at Barton Library – with funds secured for one to be purchased and installed at John Taylor High School.

Now, Mrs Cunliffe has thrown her weight behind the Mail’s effort to get gyms and fitness centres to install defibrillators.

She said: “I am delighted that the Mail have decided to spearhead this bid and I am very pleased to back the campaign.

“It is absolutely vital that more and more places make sure they have access to these devices whether they be schools, gyms or fitness centres.
“Any place that people exercise or exert themselves has to have a defibrillator.”

Her son William was born with several heart conditions and has had to undergo complex open heart procedures and was airlifted to hospital in March last year after collapsing.

Mrs Cunliffe added: “Not until something happens like with William do you understand how many people can suffer with heart problems and then just fall ill.

“Luckily he is now doing really well and I hope people back this campaign so know one has to go through what we did just one year ago.”

The Mail launched its campaign after a 64-year-old man was left brain damaged and fighting for life after suffering a cardiac arrest while working out at a local gym.

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