A St Michael’s Hospice volunteer whose life was saved by heart specialists has completed a charity Four Piers Challenge Walk as a way of saying thank you.
Grandfather Tony Larlham, 64, was rushed to the DGH at Eastbourne in September 2015 when he became unwell after suffering acute pain in his neck.
He was transferred to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton for emergency treatment. His aorta – the main artery coming out of the heart - had ruptured and he needed several hours of surgery.
His kidneys also stopped working and he had a severe chest infection.
Now, 12 months on, Tony has raised more than £1000 for Sussex Heart, a cardiac care charity in Sussex, by walking the length of four piers – Hastings, Worthing, Brighton and Eastbourne – despite only being able to walk with a stick and being constantly short of breath.
Tony said: “The team at the cardiac surgery unit of the Royal Sussex County Hospital were amazing, and there is no doubt that they saved my life.
“After eight weeks in hospital, I came home feeling like I had been hit by a train. I was very weak and could barely walk ten yards with a Zimmer frame.
Tony – who was volunteering for St Michaels Hospice in Hastings at the time – now has a pacemaker and says he started to feel better at the turn of the year.
He said: “It has been a long road to recovery and I will never be how I was before, but the 4 Piers Challenge Walk has been really important to me.
“My challenge was to walk from the entrance to each pier to the end and then back, which for me was a major achievement.”
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