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"My Mum’s not breathing, you need to come right away"

Date: 15 May 2024

Six-year-old Dimitri receives bravery award after calling 999 for his mum.

Photo of EEAST Chief Executive Tom Abell, Dimitri Clark, Michelle Behn, General Manager, Colchester

A six-year-old boy who dialled 999 when his mum had a severe asthma attack has had his bravery recognised with a certificate presented by the Chief Executive of the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST).

Rhiannon Clark, who has brittle asthma, was at home last month when she began having a bad attack.

“I have a lot of attacks, but this was the first time that I had one when my husband was not there.

“I lost the ability to speak, but Dimitri made the call for me."

When asked what service he needed, he asked for an ambulance, and said; "my mum’s not breathing, you need to come right away."

He was able to give the address and the What Three Words location.

He gave the call handler information about whether I had asthma and used an inhaler.

The ambulance crew arrived in under five minutes and he took care of his brother Viktor while the crew looked after his mum.

Fortunately, after being given a specially-dosed nebuliser, Rhiannon was safe to be left at home, as her husband was returning.

“I’m very proud of Dimitri as he has a speech impediment and doesn’t really know how to talk to people on the phone yet, so it was quite a challenge for him to talk to strangers and give them information.”

Dimitri is a student at St Peter’s C of E Primary School, Coggeshall and at a was presented his certificate recognising his bravery at a school assembly by EEAST CEO Tom Abell.

Tom said:

"I am always amazed how children as young as Dimitri can act so calmly and do what is necessary to get help when there’s an emergency. It would have a frightening experience for anyone, but for someone unused to talking on the phone that must have been even more difficult.

“Dimitri showed real courage and gave us the information we needed to get help to his mum.

“It was a pleasure to meet Dimitri and his family to present such a well-deserved award."

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