Aug. 31, 2013
A woman who suffered a horrific head injury after falling from her horse has thanked the good samaritan who stopped to help save her life.
Clair Huntley, from Singleton, Ashford, was out riding in Great Chart when a dog frightened her horse exactly a year ago tomorrow.
The 39-year-old, of Langley Drive, was thrown from the horse and her instructor’s animal stood on her head – leaving her with multiple head injuries.
Mrs Huntley, who has been riding since she was four, was left lying in the road.
But she found by passing motorist Jennifer Fowler, who stopped to help while her three young children waited in the car.
“She nearly ran me over because I was lying in a narrow country lane,” said Mrs Huntley.
“She came and sat down with me and called the air ambulance and asked another lady to stop any traffic coming down the road.”
While waiting for emergency services to arrive, Mrs Huntley – who was in and out of consciousness – was able to say her husband, glass designer Kevin, was playing golf. Mrs Fowler called every golf club in Kent to try and track him down.
Mrs Huntley was later airlifted to King’s College Hospital, in London, where they found she had suffered 18 fractures to her skull, her jaw was broken in two places, her eye socket was shattered and a bone near her collarbone was also broken.
She had brain surgery that took six-and-a-half hours and remained in a coma for more than three weeks.
When she came round, she thought it was 2010 and – after help from her family – she regained most of her memory apart from a two-month period around the accident.
Mrs Huntley has had multiple sessions of physiotherapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy on the road to recovery and still has weekly treatment.
Despite having speech and mobility difficulties, she is now well enough to work at electronics company Megger in Dover.
“I’m a medical miracle, they tell me,” she said. “They didn’t think I would be able to do anything. They said most people with the same sort of injuries as me never walk or talk again.”
Mrs Huntley gets dizzy easily, around 50 times a day, and her speech is slurred and can be clipped if she tries to talk too quickly.
“My mobility is far from normal and as I had fits in hospital due to my brain damage, I am not allowed to drive at present,” she said.
She is grateful to her husband Kevin and all her family for their support, as well as the help of Kent Air Ambulance and the hospital staff. But the person to whom she is most thankful is Jennifer Fowler who she says saved her life.
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