Ipswich: Hero bus engineer’s quick-thinking after colleague suffers stroke

Chris Gordon and Ivan Hazell

Chris Gordon and Ivan Hazell - Credit: Archant

A bus engineer from Ipswich has been hailed a hero after noticing that a colleague was suffering a stroke at work.

Chris Gordon, an engineering supervisor at First Ipswich, was praised for his quick-thinking when he saw the signs that 70-year-old Ivan Hazell was having a stroke.

Mr Gordon said: “I was inspecting buses between the depot and the workshop all morning so I hadn’t seen much of Ivan, who was working in the garage.

“He came into the workshop and I noticed his speech was slightly slurred and he was dribbling.

“I could see he wasn’t right and I wasn’t happy for him to carry on working.

“I thought he was having a stroke. My Dad has suffered four strokes so I knew what the symptoms were and what to look out for.”

Mr Hazell went home and after speaking with his neighbour, took himself to hospital.

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He was checked over in A&E but was soon sent home. The next day his concerned wife phoned the doctor and he was sent back to hospital where he stayed for four days.

Doctors found a bleed in Mr Hazell’s neck and it was soon obvious that he had suffered a series of mini strokes.

Mr Hazell said: “I am a headstrong person. In 40 years I have only had a week off work due to sickness.

“I wouldn’t even take any medication if I had a cold or a headache. I am rarely ill, I am very lucky.

“I am so grateful for Chris’ actions, I feel I owe him my life.”

Mr Hazell, who worked for First as a body fitter for 39 years, retired from the company in September.

Chris Speed, business manager for First in Ipswich, said: “We applaud Chris for his quick thinking. His prompt actions may have saved Ivan’s life.

“Ivan is a first class worker and we will definitely keep in touch.”

Mr Speed said they wanted to thank Mr Hazell for his hard work and dedication over the past four decades.