It was pure chance that brought them together on August 9, 2015, when Gary Gathergood was cycling up Bury Hill and heard the cries of Amanda Worne hidden in bushes by the side of the road.
Luckily for Amanda, Gary stopped and found her barely able to breathe with a punctured lung and a broken spine, ribs and collarbone.
He kept her calm as they waited for an ambulance, which took the mum-of-four to hospital where she was told she would never walk again.
Forward nearly two years and Gary, from Portslade, is among around 100 volunteers who have given up their time to help transform Amanda’s home for BBC One TV show DIY SOS.
Speaking at the build in Yapton on Tuesday, the retired former coastguard has spoken of his delight at being part of the project and how he cannot wait to see Amanda’s face when her new and fully modified home is revealed to her on Thursday.
Gary said: “I’m loving every minute of this, I don’t want it to end.
“It’s a unique thing to be part of and all these tradesmen are brilliant for giving up their time to do something that will change Amanda’s life.
“I’ve learnt so much and made some good friends as well.”
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