Posted: Thu 9th Jun 2022

Motorcyclist whose life was saved by Wales Air Ambulance to walk up Snowdon to raise charity funds

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Thursday, Jun 9th, 2022

A motorcyclist whose life was saved by the Wales Air Ambulance will climb up Snowdon on the first anniversary of his accident in aid of the charity.

Mark Kempsell suffered serious injuries after being involved in a head on crash close to the village of Groes, near Denbigh, after he went for a ride after work.

Mark, from Newton-le-Willows, was treated by the charity’s medics at the roadside and was flown to the Royal Stoke University Hospital.

He said: “I overheard on one of the police radios that it was looking like a five hour wait for a road ambulance.

“Given the extent of my injures and the location, I needed emergency treatment. Wales Air Ambulance were able to bring the hospital effectively to me through their team of medics.

“They were able to administer treatment and transport me to hospital within a short space of time.

“I believe if there had been no air ambulance here, I wouldn’t have survived or at least the risk of further injury would have dramatically been increased.”

Mark suffered seven fractures to his neck, pelvis, arm, and wrist and fractured his C2 vertebrae, which is normally fatal or results in paralysis, meaning time and treatment were critical for Mark.

Mark, 29, underwent surgery on the Sunday but unfortunately complications arose as he had suffered cuts to one of the arteries in his neck.

Thankfully, this was able to be resolved and Mark spent two days in critical care, and was discharged from hospital after just 13 days.

Mark was discharged from hospital on his birthday, to his father and step-mother’s house, where he recovered for the next two months.

He added: “It was a slightly different birthday, but I couldn’t have received a better present.”

The retail agricultural manager for the Co-op will put on his walking boots on 23 July in hope of raising £1,500 for the lifesaving charity. He has already raised an incredible £1,230.

Reflecting on why he wanted to raise funds for the Wales Air Ambulance, Mark said: “I will never forget waking up on the Saturday morning, the day after the accident. I laid there trying to work out what had happened.

“For a few seconds I couldn’t work out where I was. When I realised and began to piece bits together, I remember saying to myself ‘this event will not define me. I have a long road ahead, but I will get through it’.

“I began to think of all the people who had saved my life, treated, and helped me.

“Over the next few days, I began to focus on how I could say thanks to these great people.

“One morning I heard an air ambulance coming into land at the hospital and it clicked. It was the perfect choice.”

Mark spoke to his family about doing a fundraiser and his brother suggested climbing Snowdon.

Mark added: “At this stage I couldn’t move much at all on my body and was in the worse pain I’ve ever experienced but it gave me something to focus on.

“Since then, I have been preparing for the challenge. It will be a great milestone for me but also the perfect time to try to say thank you to Wales Air Ambulance.”

The Wales Air Ambulance Charity needs to raise £8 million every year to keep its emergency helicopters in the air and its rapid response vehicles on the road.

The 24/7 emergency service offers advanced critical care and is often described as a ‘Flying ED’.

The on-board consultants and critical care practitioners are highly skilled and carry some of the most pioneering medical equipment in the world.

They can deliver blood transfusions, administer anaesthesia, and undertake emergency operations at the scene of the incident, before flying the patient directly to specialist care.

Mark, who has now signed up as a volunteer for the Wales Air Ambulance Charity, added: “I want to try and raise as much as I can. I’ll never be able to thank the air ambulance for what they did but I hope the money I manage to raise will help the service continue to fly and save lives across Wales.”

Eleven months on and Mark’s recovery is going well. His fractures have healed and despite his arm ‘having a way to go’ the doctors are happy with his progress.

He added: “I still experience high levels of pain and sleep poorly but when I look how far I’ve come, I have to be thankful.”

Debra Sima, community fundraiser for Wales Air Ambulance said: “Mark is such an inspirational man – despite what he has been through he set himself the huge challenge of climbing up Snowdon on the first anniversary of his accident.

“Mark’s injuries and outcome shows how critical it is for the patient to get to the hospital as soon as possible.

“Without fundraisers we wouldn’t be able to continue to be there for the people of Wales when they need us most.

“I hope everyone supports Mark with his fundraiser and we wish him well for his challenge next month. Good luck, Mark.”

Mark will be supported on the day by his friends and family. You can show your support to Mark by donating to his fundraiser via his fundraising page – Mark’s Snowdon Climb for Wales Air Ambulance.

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