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Father survives a cardiac arrest and two-week induced coma

PUBLISHED: 11:11 09 August 2019 | UPDATED: 11:32 09 August 2019

William Thomas shooting 1000 arrows to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance services and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital who saved his fathers life. Photo: Louise Thomas

William Thomas shooting 1000 arrows to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance services and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital who saved his fathers life. Photo: Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas

At only 14 years old, William Thomas faced losing his father following a cardiac arrest and two weeks in a medically induced coma.

Louise, William and Simon Thomas, 'Team Thomas' at Hingham Bowmen. Photo: Louise ThomasLouise, William and Simon Thomas, 'Team Thomas' at Hingham Bowmen. Photo: Louise Thomas

William and his family were given the devastating news, that his father, Simon, might not survive as he was put into a coma for two weeks.

But against all of the odds, William's father pulled through.

Now William says the family cannot thank the NHS staff or the air ambulance service enough for saving his father's life.

The Swaffham-based family who are passionate about archery, are members of Hingham Bowmen and are known as "Team Thomas".

William Thomas shooting 1000 arrows to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance services and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital who saved his fathers life. Photo: Louise ThomasWilliam Thomas shooting 1000 arrows to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance services and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital who saved his fathers life. Photo: Louise Thomas

So William, a student at The Nicholas Hammond Academy, decided he would shoot 1,000 arrows to raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance and Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH).

It was on October 2 last year that Mr Thomas went into cardiac arrest at his place of work.

After 25 minutes of CPR, the East Anglian Air Ambulance arrived with defibrillators and airlifted him to the NNUH.

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At hospital they discovered Mr Thomas was suffering from sepsis, septicaemia, pneumonia and a staphylococcus infection and needed to be put into a medically induced coma.

Two weeks later, and to the shock of NHS staff, Mr Thomas started to rally and despite suffering acute memory loss, is now on the road to recovery and back at home with his family.

Mr Thomas's wife Louise said: "If it hadn't been for the air ambulance and support from Norfolk and Norwich staff he wouldn't be here.

"William came up with the idea to shoot 1,000 arrows to show his gratitude and to raise money for everyone who helped Simon to live. Their work was unbelievable."

The 1,000-arrow shoot took place on August 4, which started at 9.30am and finished as William shot his last arrow at 3.30pm.

The event raised more than £2,000 for the East Anglian Air Ambulance and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNHU).

Mrs Thomas added: "William's hand hurt, and his lower back, but he shot just over 1,000 arrows.

"He was determined all the way through and he thoroughly enjoyed it. It was a massive task for a young lad."

William said: "It was my way to say thank you for saving my dad's life."

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