Miles for Men fundraiser speaks of his reunion with trucker who saved his life

A community champion who feared he had taken his last breath has thanked he man who saved his life face-to-face for the first time.

Thursday, 21st December 2017, 11:21 am
Updated Thursday, 21st December 2017, 11:25 am
Stephen Picton meets Brian Mungwadzi in person as the pair met for the first time since Stephen's collapse as he suffered an asthma attack.
Stephen Picton meets Brian Mungwadzi in person as the pair met for the first time since Stephen's collapse as he suffered an asthma attack.

Taxi driver Stephen Picton was behind the wheel when he began to have an asthma attack on the A1 as he returned from a job in Leeds.

The 46-year-old managed to pull off the motorway and into the first layby on the A19, where he got attention of a truck driver preparing to pull away by flashing his lights and then pulled himself out of his car and fell to the ground.

Eddie Stobbart driver Brian Mungwadzi, from Stockton, called for an ambulance, loosened his clothing and helped keep him warm, holding Stephen's hand tight until paramedics arrived.

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Stephen was taken to hospital, where medics were able to bring his breathing under control.

Now, following on from the attack on the morning of Saturday, December 2, the two drivers have met up for the first time since the alert.

Stephen, who is part of the Hartlepool-based Miles for Men charity team, said: "It was brilliant, absolutely brilliant.

"Obviously, at the time, I couldn't breathe and I didn't get a really good look at the bloke, I just knew he worked for Eddie Stobbart as a lorry driver, but I had spoke to him a couple of times over the phone,

"But for me to be able to meet him again, and just before Christmas, it meant so much.

"I'm feeling fantastic now, back to my normal self.

"I know they tell you not to panic when it happens, but that's exactly what you do when you can't catch your breath.

"He was just finished his break and was about to pull away. If I had been one minute later, that would have been it, I would have stopped breathing.

"I put a message on Facebook after it had happened, and I got so many messages, it got right to my heart.

"It was so special to be able to thank him properly.

"Brian's originally from Zimbabwe and he's had messages from as far as Cape Town in South Africa and from the chief executive officer of Eddie Stobbart thanking him for what he has done.

"All his family are so proud of him.

"But to me, Brian is my knight in shining armour and I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for him."