27 March 2014
Lance Corporal Sam Herbert of Derbyshire ACF was announced as the winner of the St John Ambulance Young Hero of the Year Award at a glittering dinner on Wednesday 26 March hosted by the Mail on Sunday.
General Wood, Chairman of ACFA, was first to congratulate Sam on his wonderful achievement, “Well done to Sam and all of you who voted for him. What a fantastic achievement for the Army Cadet Force!”
Originally called the St. John Ambulance Award, Everyday Heroes raises awareness regarding the importance of first aid and pays tribute to nominated members of the public who have used it to help others. The event also recognises businesses that advocate the use of first aid and help provide their communities with more trained first aid workers.
Sam, 15, from Derby, suffers from a medical condition that reduces his strength but his swift action and first aid skills enabled him to save the life of a 55-year-old stranger.
Describing what happened, Sam said: “I was walking down the street after Army cadets one evening in May when a man in front of me fell over. I heard the wallop of his head on the floor and he was having a fit.
“I put him in the recovery position, but his condition was starting to deteriorate and he stopped breathing so I started chest compressions. Because of my condition, I was worried I wouldn’t have the strength to perform CPR for very long so I showed a woman who was passing by how to do it. He was breathing again before the ambulance arrived.
“When the paramedics arrived, they said we’d done the right thing and that if we hadn’t helped him he probably would have died. I never saw him again but I’m told he survived. We do lots of practice at first aid in the Army Cadets but I never thought I’d have to use it in real life.”
Despite his medical condition Sam doesn’t let health issues hold him back. “I’ve done scuba-diving with Army cadets, I have a black belt in kung fu and I’m about to do the Three Peaks Challenge with my dad.”
Sam is pictured with compere Tess Daly and Her Royal Highness the Countess of Wessex who highlighted Sam's story in her keynote speech at the awards.
(Image credit: Wireimage for St John's Ambulance)