News and Media Patient Stories Jo's story It was a Monday afternoon and I wanted to make the most of a lovely sunny day - I took my horse out for a ride across the fields just outside Great Brickhill. About half way through, while walking across flat ground, my horse began to stumble. Rather than correcting herself, she kept on falling and I had nowhere else to go but fall off over her shoulder. That really should have been the end of that. I would have got up, dusted myself down and got back on. However, that is not how it ended. My horse had tripped to the point of falling herself and rolled on to me. I ride with my mobile phone tucked in my boot, but with pain in both my shoulder and hip, and difficulty breathing, reaching it was quite a challenge. Luckily, I did manage to do so, and was able to call for help. When the Ambulance and Paramedics arrived I felt a huge sense of relief, not just at being able to have some medication for the pain, but knowing I was in safe hands. Even more so when Thames Valley Air Ambulance arrived shortly afterwards. The doctor and paramedics took some time stabilising me. I was given ketamine at the point they needed to roll me over onto the stretcher. It worked, I thankfully don’t remember that part at all. Without the air ambulance, I would have had to travel over some extremely bumpy ground, and with the injuries I had, it would have been unbearable. I would have also been taken to the nearest hospital which would not have been well equipped to deal with my injuries. TVAA took me straight to the trauma unit at John Radcliffe Hospital where I was diagnosed with multiple fractures to my pelvis and ribs, a broken collarbone, internal bleeding, and some very impressive bruising. My horse by the way was fine, I had cushioned her fall nicely. I stayed in hospital for just over three weeks and was on crutches for about two months after that. With physiotherapy and no small amount of determination I am now almost fully fit. I am very lucky to still be here. A friend of mine insistent that I plan a list of things I wanted to do when I had recovered. Six months after my accident I found myself walking along a section of The Great Wall of China – definitely ticking one off my bucket list. TVAA offered me the opportunity to visit their base at RAF Benson and to meet the crew that were on duty that day. I wanted to thank in person the people who had helped me. I was really quite nervous about the visit, especially seeing the helicopter again. I need not have been, everyone was lovely. It was fascinating to see how the whole operation works and I have nothing but admiration for the work that the whole team do.