Medics praised for saving Colyford child

Parents give heartfelt thanks for team’s speedy actions to help Caroline, aged two

MEDICS whose speedy response saved a desperately ill Colyford girl have been praised by her grateful parents.

Emergency teams twice came to the rescue when two-year-old Caroline Turley collapsed at her home in Francis Way.

In a frightening 24 hours she was hospitalised both times as her temperature soared to 39.5 degrees, and she suffered two seizures.

The second attack was so bad the air ambulance was called to rush her to hospital after she turned blue and stopped breathing.

This week grateful parents Simon and Roisin said they could not praise paramedics and hospital staff enough for helping their, now fully recovered, daughter.

The drama began in the early hours of Sunday (May 29) when Caroline developed a high fever and suffered a convulsive fit.

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Said Mrs Turley: “At 7pm the previous evening she was playing on the trampoline but by five next morning she was fighting for her life.

“I dialled 999 and the Seaton fire and rescue rapid response team came immediately, followed by the land ambulance which took her to Wonford Hospital in Exeter.

“They were all brilliant and were pretty sure what it was. She had suffered a febrile convulsion as a result of her temperature. It is relatively common in children and is a kind of trip switch when their temperature gets too high. Normally they come out of it quite quickly.”

Caroline was stabilised in hospital and the couple were able to take her home later that day.

But after some 20 minutes her temperature rocketed again and things took a terrifying turn for the worse.

Said Mrs Turley: “She had a second seizure but this time she did not come out of it. she went blue and lifeless for quite a long time. We called the paramedics and the rapid response ambulance team arrived first. She was not breathing and was very blue, with glazed eyes. They decided she had to get to hospital quickly so called the Air Ambulance which landed on Seaton cricket field.”

With the speedy treatment she needed Caroline again recovered quickly – and the cause of all her woes was diagnosed as a simple ear infection.

Mrs Turley said their main concern now was to thank everyone who helped get Caroline the treatment she so urgently needed at the time.

“The fire first responders, the land ambulance crews, the air ambulance and hospital staff are all top people and were just amazing,” she said. “They were brilliant. People may knock the NHS but we certainly can’t.”

In fact, she said it was the second time the ambulance first responder had come to Caroline’s aid.

“When she was seven weeks old she rolled over and stopped breathing and he saved her life by resuscitating her,” she said. “We still don’t know his name.”

Now Caroline is the second family member to have special air ambulance teddybear to say she was a passenger.

Her brother Liam, aged nine, got one five years ago when he cut off a finger in the hinges of a fire door at Branscombe Primary School. His speedy flight to hospital meant doctors could stitch it back on.

* Mr and Mrs Turley, who work in the computer software industry, have already made a personal donation to the Devon Air Ambulance and hope to encourage others to support the vital service.

To find out more visit their website on