Appeal for Arthur: Send Remembrance Sunday cardiac arrest victim Arthur King a card or gift in hospital
The Indie is launching an appeal in aid of the Royal British Legion standard bearer who suffered a cardiac arrest during the Remembrance Sunday parade in Bishop's Stortford.
Two weeks after the incident, Arthur King, who will be 75 in January, remains in Princess Alexandra Hospital (PAH) in Harlow, where he was taken by ambulance after collapsing in The Causeway on November 14.
The former long-serving firefighter is expected to remain in hospital for at least another 10 days, possibly a fortnight, so we're inviting our readers and followers to send him a card or small gift.
Please address them to: Arthur King, c/o Bishop's Stortford Independent, 12 North Street, Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire CM23 2LQ.
Arthur was saved by off-duty London Ambulance Service paramedic Jack Lynch, a Royal Anglian Regiment reserve soldier who lives in Stortford and was watching the parade with his girlfriend Hannah Johnson.
Jack was helped by other emergency service workers – including Stortford firefighters, who used a defibrillator from their fire engine parked nearby in Bridge Street – as well as participants in the parade, who formed a makeshift screen to shield stricken Arthur while he was being treated.
Arthur, a father of two, grandfather of five and great-grandfather of one who lives with his wife Linda in Saffron Walden, remains in PAH.
His daughter Sharon Bagley, part of the reception team at South Street Surgery, was with her mum watching the parade when her dad became ill and they witnessed the teamwork which saved him.
Sharon said on Sunday (Nov 28): "He's had a stent fitted and is awaiting a pacemaker some time this week. He's expected to be in there at least another 10 to 14 days.
"He's doing well, considering everything, though he's bored sitting around as he's usually busy and active.
"He's reading a book a day at the moment as well as doing puzzles and crosswords, which he loves."
Due to coronavirus restrictions, only Arthur's wife Linda is allowed to visit him, which she does for an hour a day. "Though he does walk to the door to say hello to us," said Sharon.
The grateful daughter added: "He is overwhelmed by all of the well wishes he has had and thanks everyone for their care and support of him and us as a family."
The week before he was taken ill, Arthur was collecting Poppy Appeal donations on behalf of the Stortford branch of the Royal British Legion outside Sainsbury's at Thorley Park – as he has done for 36 years – and had attended Thursday's Armistice Day commemoration at Stortford's war memorial and Saturday's Festival of Remembrance at London's Royal Albert Hall.
He worked as a fireman for 34 years, serving first in Bishop's Stortford at the town's old station in South Street before transferring to Patmore Close. He ended his career as a senior fire officer at Stansted Airport when he was 52. He went on to use the life-saving skills he learned at work by volunteering as a first responder.
Born and bred in Stortford, he has lived in Saffron Walden for two decades and works for Peasgood & Skeates funeral directors in the town as a casual driver and bearer.