Tuesday, July 16, 2024
Home Latest How horror car crash with tractor 'saved Yorkshire dad's life'

How horror car crash with tractor ‘saved Yorkshire dad’s life’

A Knaresborough dad was diagnosed with a heart condition he never knew he had after a horror crash in 2013.

Ryan Welford and his wife Kelly were rushed to hospital following a crash between a car and a tractor.

But whilst undergoing treatment at Harrogate District Hospital, doctors discovered that Ryan, who had suffered broken ribs, had a heart murmur.

For more news from Knaresborough click here

He then received follow-up scans at Leeds General Infirmary and there medics found that he had a hole in his heart and a defect in his heart valve, which was causing blood to leak from it.

Ryan was told this was a congenital heart condition, which meant that he had been born with the heart defects – but they had gone undetected.

Ryan Welford following open-heart surgery

“It was the first time I had ever heard about it, and I had no symptoms of any heart problems,” said the 38-year-old.

“Although the car crash was terrifying, I also felt quite lucky. Without having those checks, I wouldn’t have known anything was wrong with my heart.”

In January 2015, Ryan underwent open heart surgery to repair the defects.

“It was nerve-wrecking, and I began tying up loose ends. I proposed to my wife just days before the operation,” said the dad-of-one.

Ryan and Kelly married after his surgery

Ryan and Kelly married after his surgery

“Soon enough I got my head around the surgery. I told myself it had to be done and there was no other way around it.”

The surgery was successful, and Ryan was discharged from the hospital six days later.

He was soon able to get back on his feet, and following the surgery, he hasn’t needed any further treatment.

However, the impact of heart disease hit close to home again when Ryan’s father-in-law Neil Corbett passed away in 2019 following a sudden cardiac arrest.

Neil was just 53 and had been diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) shortly before his death.

DCM is a disease of the heart muscle, which makes the muscle walls become enlarged and weaker, resulting in the heart not being able to pump blood around the body properly.

The loss of his father-in-law – coupled with his own experience of heart disease – inspired Ryan to do something in aid of the British Heart Foundation, which funds research into heart and circulatory conditions.

Ryan Welford, along with wife Kelly, 32 and son Archie, 14, will take on the BHF’s Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge to raise funds for the charity’s life-saving research.

“Kelly saw the event advertised online,” said Ryan, who works as a delivery driver.

Ryan will also be doing the challenge in memory of his father-in-law Neil Corbett

Ryan will also be doing the challenge in memory of his father-in-law Neil Corbett

“She fleetingly said we should do that and then we seriously put some thought into it. I’m really looking forward to it – we’re not avid walkers so there’s a bit of training to do, but I know we will give it our all when we are out there on the day.

“Raising money for the BHF’s work will make it all worth it. The treatment I had just wouldn’t have been possible without the advances in research.”

The BHF’s Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge will see participants follow a route that starts and ends in Horton-on-Ribblesdale, taking on the three highest peaks in Yorkshire: Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough.

Enter your postcode to see local issues near you

They will also trek through the heart of some of the UK’s most majestic scenery, including the famous Ribblehead Viaduct.

Entry includes a hot dinner after the trek, along with snacks and refreshments along the way.

And those taking part will also raise money towards the BHF’s life saving research into conditions like heart disease, stroke and vascular dementia, and their risk factors such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

This research has never been more needed, with around 670,000 people in Yorkshire currently living with heart and circulatory diseases. Sadly, every 40 minutes, someone in Yorkshire dies from one of these conditions.

read more
read more

Jake Kavaliauskas, Event Lead for the BHF’s Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, said: “We are so grateful that Ryan has chosen to sign up for the BHF’s Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge.

“Our thrilling event will cover 24 miles and 5,000 feet of climbing, with participants facing rocky terrain and steep climbs that will push them to the limit. But it will all be for a good cause, as the money raised by people like Ryan will help fund the BHF’s groundbreaking science to save and improve more lives.

“We now need more people to sign up to this event to help power our life saving research.”

People can choose to take part in the event on either July 23 or 24.

If you would like to sponsor Ryan, you can donate here.

To get the latest email updates from North Yorkshire Live, click here.

read more
read more

Most Popular

Recent Comments