Six-year-old fundraising for air ambulance charity that helped sister during seizure

Isla Thornhill (pictured) suffered a seven-minute seizure after a short period of being unresponsive last week (September 7).

Esme Thornhill (Left middle) and her friends Zara Jackson and Gracie Howe who are taking part in a sponsored swim to raise money for Magpas air ambulance charity. Magpas helped Esme's sister Isla (R) when she suffered a seizure last week (September 7) - Credit: Willow Thornhill

Six-year-old Esme Thornhill is fundraising to support Magpas Air Ambulance after they attended an emergency situation to help her three-year-old sister Isla.   

Mum Willow, of March, says Isla suffered a seven-minute seizure after a short period of being unresponsive. 

She has hailed the efforts of air ambulance doctors and paramedics for their prompt response.    

The family were helped by two ambulances, a first responder and Magpas air ambulance, who were there within minutes.   

“The paramedics were remarkable, working quickly but calmly to provide the best care for Isla,” said Willow.    

Isla Thornhill (pictured) suffered a seven-minute seizure after a short period of being unresponsive last week (September 7).

Isla Thornhill (pictured) suffered a seven-minute seizure after a short period of being unresponsive last week (September 7). - Credit: Willow Thornhill

Isla and Esme Thornhill (Right) pictured with Mum, Willow and Dad, Aaron.

Isla and Esme Thornhill (Right) pictured with Mum, Willow and Dad, Aaron. The family were helped by two ambulances, a first responder and magpas air ambulance. - Credit: Willow Thornhill


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Isla suffers from blue breath syndrome, also known as cyanotic breath-holding, meaning that when she cries, she cannot always catch her breath properly. 

Willow said: “Isla bumped her elbow which resulted in her having a breath-holding episode where she became unresponsive and turned blue.    

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“As parents we tried to remain calm and did what we could whilst waiting for help.”    

Air ambulance doctors assisted the paramedics and once they were happy that Isla was safe to travel, she was taken to Peterborough City Hospital on blue lights.    

Isla recovered quickly and started a new adventure at her first day of pre-school this week. 

Esme Thornhill (middle) is raising money for Magpas air ambulance charity, after her younger sister Isla needed one

Esme Thornhill (middle) is raising money for Magpas air ambulance charity, after her younger sister Isla needed one just last week. Her friends, Zara Jackson (L) and Gracie Howe (R) are accompanying Esme for her sponsored swim. - Credit: Willow Thornhill

The family were surprised that the air ambulance receives no funding from the NHS. 

As a result, Isla’s sister, six-year-old Esme, is raising money for the Magpas air ambulance charity.    

Esme, along with friends Gracie Howe and Zara Jackson, is taking part in a sponsored swim at the George Campbell Leisure Centre in March on October 3 with an aim to swim a mile in total.

Willow said: “The leisure centre has been so supportive in organising the swim. 

“I’m incredibly proud of them for wanting to support such a fantastic charity.  

“They’ve raised a fantastic amount of money in a short period of time. 

“To be able to show our support to Magpas has been overwhelming.”    

The family are sharing their experience, in hope that Magpas will continue to get support and donations.

They have thanked the East of England Ambulance Service, doctors from Magpas and the control room staff. 

To donate to Esme’s sponsored swim, visit her GoFundMe page. 

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