Heart attack survivor says ‘thank you’ to his Haverhill saviour

Garry Kerr and Mick Carter (centre) with their families at Haverhill Golf Club
Garry Kerr and Mick Carter (centre) with their families at Haverhill Golf Club

A former Olympic boxer who suffered a near fatal heart attack while playing golf has returned to the club where it happened to thank the father and son who saved his life.

Mick Carter, 68, who represented Great Britain as a bantamweight in the 1968 Mexico Summer Olympics, met up with Garry Kerr, his son Ellis, and other family members at Haverhill Golf Club on Sunday for the emotional reunion – 12 weeks after he almost lost his life on the course.

Mr Carter said: “As far as Garry knows I was dead before I hit the floor. I had a massive heart attack and went blue.

“I wanted to meet up and have lunch and just thank him and his young boy Ellis, who is a lovely little lad.”

Both men were joined by members of their families, among them Garry’s seven-year-old son, Ellis, who ran for help when the dramatic incident took place on August 19.

Mr Carter, who lives in Loughton, Essex, was visiting his daughter Hayley in Cornish Hall End and was playing golf with his son-in-law, Stuart, when he collapsed
 with the heart attack on August 19.

Mr Kerr, who was playing a round with junior golfing champion Ellis on a neighbouring hole, leapt into action, giving Mr Carter CPR for 20 minutes until a paramedic arrived with a defibrillator and shocked his heart back to life.

Mr Carter, who was playing at Haverhill Golf Club for the first time, has since undergone a triple heart bypass at Papworth Hospital, having spent 21 days there before the surgery and five days afterwards, but is now home 
and ‘feeling better than I ever did’.

“He (Garry) had taken the CPR course because his father had died at 60 of a heart attack,” explained Mr Carter.

“He decided if it did happen again to someone else he wanted to be able to do something about it and save a life.

“He said ‘I tell you one thing, doing that course and bringing you back to life, I think I’ve levelled things up a bit’.

“It turned out it was not my time to go, because he had done his CPR course.”

At Sunday’s get together, Mr Carter presented Ellis with a photo of himself at the Olympic Village in 1968.

He also gave Garry a photo of himself with four world champion boxers – John H Stacey, Barry McGuigan, Ricky Hatton and John Conteh, and the silver Olympic cufflinks which he’d had for more 49 years.

Garry, who lives in Bergamot Road, Haverhill, described what happened when he met Mr Carter on Sunday.

“The first thing I said to him was ‘you look a lot better than the last time I saw you’.

“We had a chat and he bought me a drink and he said ‘ you saved my life’.

“I didn’t know what to say to that. I was just feeling a bit humbled really.”

Mr Carter added: “We had a lovely day with him.

“He’s got a great family and it has all turned out for the best.”

Mr Carter, Stuart, Ellis and Garry now plan to meet up again in the spring for a round of golf together.