A GRANDFATHER from South Tyneside is hoping to track down the “guardian angel” who helped him when he took ill on a Christmas shopping trip.
Jim Furlong was travelling to Newcastle from his home in Jarrow last Tuesday when he took ill on the Metro.
The 72-year-old, from Jarrow, who suffers from heart problems, had an angina attack and didn’t have his tablets with him.
The grandfather-of-12 said: “All I had on me was my GTN – glyceryl trinitrate – spray. You use it to relieve the pain of angina.
“What it does is open up your arteries and your blood pressure drops and you’re only meant to use it when you can lie down, but I thought I’d be fine on the Metro.
“It was only when I stood up to get off at Monument that I realised I wasn’t OK, and I tried to sit down on the seats on the platform and pull myself round.”
Mr Furlong, who is now retired but still a trustee of the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, began to feel faint but says that a guardian angel came to his rescue.
He said: “I got off the Metro and I just went down, but I could hear a voice and feel someone shaking me.
“I just remember he had a grey beard and glasses and he kept talking to me to make sure I was alright, but I couldn’t really respond.
“He phoned an ambulance and stayed with me until it came and tried to get information from me for the ambulance service.
“For a complete stranger to do that is just fantastic. I like to think about guardian angels floating in the air above us but this just shows that they can be closer than you think. They can be our friends, family, and even a perfect stranger.”
Mr Furlong was later taken to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary in an ambulance, but says that he’s now feeling much better.
He added: “I was scared. It frightened me and it was freezing. I didn’t have my phone with me and I couldn’t get help myself so I was lucky that this kind man stopped to help me.
“We read things in the paper all the time about wars and bad things going on in the world, and I just wanted to show everyone that there are good people out there.
“I want to thank the Metro staff, the paramedics and the staff at the RVI for everything they did, but especially this man who went out of his way to help me.
“If I could speak to him, I would just say, ‘God bless you and thank you’.
“If he’s too embarrassed to come forward then I understand, but I just wanted him to know that what he did meant a lot to me and I’ll never forget it.”
Mr Furlong got the Metro from Jarrow to Monument at 9.50am last Tuesday.
•Were you the man that helped Mr Furlong? Call us on 501 7435.