A father from Dartford who suffered a heart attack at his home has been reunited with the two ambulance service colleagues who helped save his life.

Ian Harris, 52, from Dartford, Kent was washing his car at his home on the evening of 20 May, 2023, when he started to feel pain and discomfort in his hands, as well as coming over flustered and dizzy.

Through his many years of watching 999 programmes on TV with his family, Ian’s first thought was to go inside his home and lay down on a flat surface. He raised his legs up on the bathroom sink and called 111 as initially, he didn’t realise he was suffering from a heart attack.

As his symptoms worsened, Ian called 999, and Trainee Associate Ambulance Practitioner Samantha Rees and Paramedic Fran Brewer were luckily just around the corner from his address.

On arrival, Samantha and Fran quickly diagnosed Ian as having a severe heart attack and he was immediately taken to The William Harvey Hospital in Ashford for surgery and further medical treatment.

After spending two days in intensive care, Ian was then transferred to the hospital ward where he stayed for several further days to recover. Subsequently, Ian then underwent a procedure to have a permanent stent fitted, facilitating improved blood flow through narrowed or blocked arteries.

Along with his wife, Kerry, daughter, Emily and son in law Colin, Ian visited a South East Coast Ambulance Service’s (SECAmb) ambulance station in Dartford recently for the emotional reunion with Trainee Associate Ambulance Practitioner, Samantha and Paramedic, Fran.

Ian is still on his journey to a full recovery and is very much looking forward to taking a trip to Spain with his family, shortly after the one-year anniversary of his heart attack. After the incident, Ian and his family also got a dog which Ian is enjoying taking for short walks in the neighbourhood.

Ian said, “I didn’t realise the severity of the heart attack until I was back at home and reading through the paperwork. I am very lucky to be alive.”

Samantha said, “When we received the many letters of gratitude from Ian’s family it brought me and Fran to tears. We were over the moon to be seeing Ian again, and in such good health.”

Ian said, “The incident has really made me re-evaluate life and confirm what’s important to me. Since the incident happened, I have rekindled a relationship with one of my daughters who I hadn’t spoken to in 14 years. For this, I am eternally grateful.”