Car crash victim Helen McMenamin-Smith, from Burwell, thanks passers-by and charity doctor who rescued her from blazing car

Helen's incident scene

Helen's incident scene - Credit: contributed

A woman who is lucky to be alive after being saved from the burning wreck of her car following an accident has had an emotional reunion with her “very special people”.

Magpas former patient Helen and husband John

Magpas former patient Helen and husband John - Credit: Contributed

Helen McMenamin-Smith, from Burwell, near Newmarket, was involved in a horrific car accident in May last year as she was driving through Littleport.

The car collided with a motorbike and ended up on its roof before bursting into flames with Mrs McMenamin-Smith trapped inside.

She was pulled from the flaming car by passersby Flight Lieutenant Chris Pearson, based at RAF Marham in Norfolk, and Alan Chapman.

The 52-year-old mum suffered skull fractures and severe brain, spine and eye injuries in the crash.

Front row: RAF Flight Lieutenant Chris Pearson with Magpas Helimedix former patient Helen McMenamin

Front row: RAF Flight Lieutenant Chris Pearson with Magpas Helimedix former patient Helen McMenamin-Smith and Alan Chapman. Back row: Magpas Helimedix Doctor Wayne Kark, Helens husband John McMenamin-Smith and Alyxandra McMenamin-Smith - Credit: contributed

Mr Pearson’s wife Nikki, who was training to be an RAF doctor, ahelped keep her warm and keep her neck straight while preventing her choking on her own blood as they waited for help.

An off-duty East of England Ambulance Service (EEAST) paramedic stopped and helped, and was soon joined by an EEAST paramedic crew and Magpas Helimedix air ambulance, who flew in to provide critical accident and emergency (A&E) care at the roadside.

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Magpas doctor Wayne Kark and Magpas paramedic Ryan Warwick sedated Helen and then anaesthetised her (putting her in a medically-induced coma) to reduce the effect of her head and other severe injuries.

They flew her to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge for further treatment.

Helen in hospital 7 weeks after the incident

Helen in hospital 7 weeks after the incident - Credit: contributed

Almost a year-and-a-half later Mrs McMenamin-Smith is doing well, and said she would not be alive if it was not for those people who came to her rescue that day.

Today at Magpas’s base in Huntingdon, she had the chance to meet Mr Kark for the first time since the accident and was also joined by Flt Lt Pearson and Mr Chapman.

Her husband John Smith and their daughter Alyxandra, 17, also joined them for the emotional occasion.

Mrs McMenamin-Smith said it was fantastic to be with her very special people.

“I have had a fantastic day and it’s absolutely wonderful to meet the people who have saved my life,” she said.

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