I had planned to take a stroll in Hamstead heath with my friend S. for a while.
Our lives are both pretty busy so it had taken a week or two to settle on a day. We both had rather heavy nights the Saturday before but so it was that yesterday we managed to meet up albeit with sore heads and droopy eyes.
he weather held and we were sat or lying on the grass catching up when S. started and said "Oh, that looked bad." Confused I looked around and spotted some kids, one of them on the ground. S told me she'd seen him come off his bike while rolling down the hill. We went over to see if he was alright and it looked pretty bad. The kid (by the name of L.) appeared unconcious but his eyes were moving rapidly. He didn't respond to his name or any other speech. I said not to move him and his mentor, J. called 999 and then handed the phone over to me while he attended to his charge. I did what you're supposed to here and gave them as clear a description as I could of the circumstances, my phone number name and so on, and we waited.
S. was fantastic, talking soothingly, getting as much response from L. as possible and making sure he was covered in jackets. She also managed to keep J. from freaking out completely, given he's a young man in charge of an even younger boy and has the task of informing the parents I can hardly blame him.
To thier credit and despite the fact we were in the middle of the heath the medics got there quickly, no longer than 15 minutes and briskly went about thier business. Less impressive was the attending Hamstead Heath Constabulary officer who decided that the best way to comfort J. was to say "So your his mentor? That's going well then." it's a good thing he isn't a doctor, his bedside manner stinks.
Anyway once the professionals were in charge we got out of the way and walked up to the viewing point which was impressive. people were still flying kites and admiring the view along with us, life continuing as normal while something life changing was happening to three kids down below us. A surreal experience. It was decided food was required so we headed out of the park. As we were doing so we saw a helicopter circling. A few seconds of observation made it clear it was going to land in the park and there really could be only one reason. Concerned we watched as the chopper landed and folk scrambled out. After a minute or two we realised that there was nothing left we could do and headed away. "That's why I never want to be a parent," says S. "I never want to recieve a phone call like that." I found myself thinking of J and how much older he is going to feel now. A hard life experience to have...
I'm trying to find out if there is any way we can find out what happend to L. We're both deeply concerned. I appreciate that things may be confidential so it may not be possible. If I do find a method of finding out I'll update here to share the knowledge for once the web is failing me in this.
ETA: After a lot of asking and ringing around I eventually was dead-ended at the hospital L. was flown to. It seems (understandably) that patient confidentiality is prime so without being able to give full details of the individual concerned I wasn't able to find out more. An article in the Ham & High did mention the accident and said he was treated for his injuries. Apparently we could follow up on the 999 call that i was part of and the subsequent one I made, I'll update again if that bears any fruit. I do hope the kid is ok.