WHEN he went to get some milk at a local shop, Gavin Hampton had no idea that he was about to become involved in a life-saving drama.
Gavin leapt into action to administer life-saving first aid on one-year-old Alfie Baldwin, who was suffering a seizure outside the One Stop shop in Chineham.
Gavin, 45, had only just acquired first aid skills, having been on a course in November.
The drama began on the evening of February 9 when Alfie’s mum Daisy Hope rushed into the One Stop shop at around 8.30pm, asking for the postcode to give to the ambulance operator.
She had taken her little boy to the out-of-hours HantsDoc service earlier in the evening with a high temperature, and had been given a prescription which she was collecting from the pharmacy next door.
But as she left the car, her father David started shouting that something was wrong with Alfie who was fitting.
Daisy called 999 but could only watch in panic as her son became unconscious.
The 20-year-old, from Sherborne St John, said: “It was the scariest thing. I couldn’t even look.
“I was on the phone to the ambulance, and the person I was talking to said ‘you need to calm down’. It was horrible.”
Thankfully, Gavin knew what to do and took Alfie into the shop, where staff opened up a back room for him to use.
Alfie was completely unresponsive, but Gavin cleared his airways to allow him to breathe and stop him from choking, and ensured he was safe until paramedics arrived.
The consultant, from Sherfield-on-Loddon, said: “His breathing was laboured – he had been sick and his airways were all blocked and he couldn’t breathe. I cleared his airways and put him down on the ground while the seizure took place.”
He added: “I didn’t have time to think. Afterwards, you wonder what you have done, but anyone would do the same. I thought how scary it is to do first aid on someone so small. There was an element of shock afterwards but I was happy to be able to help.”
Daisy said: “Gavin made me feel so much better. He was really good.
“I’m so grateful. He did save Alfie’s life. I didn’t know what to do.”
Alfie was taken to Basingstoke hospital and was found to have a viral infection in his throat, which had caused the seizure.
Daisy, who also has a two-year-old daughter Elsie-Mai Hope, said the situation was even more frightening because she had almost lost her son when he was born.
Alfie arrived premature and had gastroschisis – a condition where his intestines were on the outside of his body, resulting in him having surgery at just two weeks old.
The Gazette heard about Gavin’s life-saving actions through Facebook, and managed to get in touch with him and Daisy so she could say a proper thank you.
Gavin also had no idea what had happened to Alfie after the toddler was taken off by the ambulance.
In an emotional reunion, Gavin revealed to Daisy that he had booked her a place on the same first aid course he attended, with Oakley Services, so she could gain the confidence needed to deal with emergency situations in the future.
Gavin said: “You never know when you will need the skills.”
He said saving Alfie had been a team effort, adding: “The really striking memory of the evening was Daisy – she was so incredibly brave.”
Daisy responded: “Knowing you were there made me feel so much better.
“I just want to say thank you for saving Alfie’s life.”