Pauline was driving on the Naas dual carriageway in Dublin this weekend when her 6-year-old grandson, Jack, fell ill. She spoke to Philip Boucher-Hayes on Liveline about the frightening incident and her gratitude for the passing motorists who stopped to help her.
6-year-old Jack had been complaining of feeling very hot during the journey and asked that Pauline open the windows, she explained. He took a turn for the worse quickly after that.
“I turned around to say, ‘Are you okay, Buddy?’. And he had sick on his lap…He was non-responsive.”
Pauline told Philip that she jumped out of the car, “hysterical” and took Jack out of the car seat. A man who had been waiting at the lights beside them came to her aide, saying he was an off-duty Garda. He offered to give her a Garda escort to Crumlin children’s hospital. Before they could put their plan into motion, Jack suffered a seizure.
“Jack started to seize and we put him on his side, just on the verge… at this stage, I was just hysterical. So, we put him on his side and he started vomiting out of his mouth and out of his nose. And then his left arm started shaking.”
Pauline did her best to comfort Jack throughout the terrifying ordeal.
“I was holding his hand and I was talking to him and I was saying, ‘Jack, it’s Nana’. I said, ‘I love you’. I said, ‘Don’t let anything happen to you’… and I kept talking to him and I was crying at the same time.”
Immediately, passing motorists stopped to help, Pauline remembers.
“All of a sudden, cars stopped and there was people who said they were Senior Paramedics. There were people giving me water… It was just phenomenal, the support that I got.”
One woman who stopped was a doctor. She took over Jack’s care, reassuring Pauline that he was breathing, allaying her fear that he might suffer brain damage. Jack continued to seize for about 15 minutes.
“When she told me he was okay, I collapsed… the ambulance came and they worked on Jack on the verge where he was lying.”
In the ambulance, Jack “fitted extremely bad for about 20 minutes”. While Jack remains in Crumlin Hospital for testing, he is doing much better today, Pauline says.
“He is wonderful. He is back to himself… He said, ‘Nana, I remember you talking to me and I remember you crying but I was so fast asleep I couldn’t wake up to tell you I loved you’. I said, ‘Well, then tell me now’. “
Pauline told Phllip that her faith in humanity has been restored, seeing how many people came to help her and Jack.
“All you hear is the negative on the TV and the radio. They were just wonderful. Absolutely wonderful.”
Listen back to the full interview on Liveline here.
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