Lynne Merrett (far left) with her family.
Lynne was cutting the hedge adjoining her garden at home in Warminster when she fell eight feet from the ladder she was on, hitting a concrete post and then on to her lawn.
Lynne was in agony and her husband, Nigel, who was in the garden, heard her screams and rang 999.
Paramedics arrived and due to the seriousness of her injuries Wiltshire Air Ambulance was tasked and landed at Warminster Cricket Ground. Lynne was taken there by land ambulance and flown to Salisbury District Hospital.
Lynne suffered 22 fractures to her ribs, a punctured lung and a tear in her diaphragm. She was in the High Dependency Unit for two days and was discharged after two and a half weeks.
She returned to work as a health visitor in Warminster five months later.
The accident happened on 8 August 2000 when Lynne was aged 50.
“So much to be thankful for”
Now retired, she said: “I’m very, very lucky. If it hadn’t been for Wiltshire Air Ambulance I wouldn’t be alive. I needed to get to hospital quickly and I’m really grateful to them.
“I have so much to be thankful for. As a result of being saved by Wiltshire Air Ambulance, I saw my sons get married and I now have three grandchildren.
“When I see Wiltshire Air Ambulance flying overhead I think ‘thank God for them.’
Lynne and her husband Nigel visiting Wiltshire Air Ambulance’s airbase in 2019 with members of the aircrew.
“It has saved so many people over the years and I am one of them.”
Lynne plays the charity’s Lottery and after she won £1,000 in 2016, she kindly donated back some of her winnings to Wiltshire Air Ambulance.
“I don’t play the Lottery to win but when I did, I made a donation to say thank you for all that the air ambulance does for everyone, including myself,” she said.
Nigel also raised funds for Wiltshire Air Ambulance by asking for donations on his 65th birthday.
Lynne and Nigel visited Wiltshire Air Ambulance’s airbase in Semington, near Melksham, in 2019 where they met charity staff, aircrew and were shown the Bell 429 helicopter.
Lynne said: “We were really impressed with the set up and the close working between the charity team, who have to raise the money needed to run the service, and the pilots and paramedics.”Back to life stories