A pensioner who died for more than five minutes after his heart stopped beating has today told how he feels lucky to be alive.
Brian Murphy, 69, spent several days in an induced coma after he was found collapsed at the side of the road.
I died for five and a half minutes. They got me going and I went again.Brian Murphy
But as he looks set to make a full recovery – thanks to a taxi driver and two PCSOs who spotted him by chance – he said: “I owe my life to these people.”
He said the last thing he remembers was driving along Coleridge Road, in Layton, and starting to feel ill.
The next thing he knew he was waking up several days later in Blackpool Victoria Hospital.
Mr Murphy, of Warbreck Hill Road, added: “From what the taxi driver said, I had pulled over and the door had opened – I got out and stood up and then collapsed back into the vehicle.
“I died for five and a half minutes. They got me going and I went again.
“Then the paramedics came and resuscitated me in the ambulance. They took me to the Vic and put me in an induced coma for four or five days.”
Despite going into cardiac arrest just days before Christmas, on December 18, he is already back at home and even planning his next holiday.
PCSO Ryan White, who was on routine patrol when he spotted Mr Murphy, said: “He was so lucky that day.
“We shouldn’t even have really been there. You know when you look at something and think something’s not right, I just thought: we need to turn back.
“It was a case of being in the right place at the right time.”
His colleague, PCSO Dave Roberts, then started performing CPR until paramedics arrived moments later.
Just last year, the pair were trained for exactly that situation when Blackpool Police took delivery of a new defibrillator that officers take out on patrol.
Mr Murphy, who stunned the officers when he was fit enough to offer them a cup of tea when they stopped by check up on him yesterday, said: “I can’t thank them enough.
“For about five days, I don’t remember anything. Where I was, it was really peaceful.
“I first met them in the hospital – I just burst into tears when I saw them. They are two of the men who saved my life.
“When I saw them yesterday, it brought everything back. It really makes you appreciate what you’ve got.
“Everything seemed to fall into place that day, with me going down that street and the police being there – that road is very quiet at that time.
“I’m just glad to be here again. I definitely have a different outlook on life now. I don’t walk past a Heart Foundation tin now – I always put money in.”
It was around 4.30pm when PCSO White spotted Mr Murphy’s car. He knew something was up – but thought it might have been a robbery.
It was only when he got closer he could see the taxi driver on the phone to the emergency services as he tried to make sure the 69-year-old was still alive.
PCSO White added: “He was half in the car and half on the road. It all happened so fast.
“My colleague was absolutely fantastic – he got him out of the car and started chest compressions. It must have been a minute at most before the ambulance arrived.”