An elderly woman has been reunited with the taxi driver whose quick response prevented her from being knocked down when she fell in a road.
Laurie Dell, who works for Weyline Taxis, met up with Eileen O’Brien again thanks to the Dorset Echo. As reported in last month’s PHTM, Mrs O’Brien, 80, appealed in the Echo in September to find the driver who helped her when she fell on Weymouth harbourside.
Mr Dell managed to swerve just in time as Mrs O’Brien fell in the road in front of him. He then waited with her for an hour, ensuring she was comfortable, until an ambulance arrived to take her to hospital.
Mrs O’Brien was out with her grandson Tom Walden when she tripped. She didn’t get the name of the driver who was so kind to her and wanted to thank him. With the Echo’s help, a reunion was arranged.
Before they met up, Mr Dell described his experience of the incident. He said: “I was just going down the quay and it was a bit packed. There were a lot of cars and a lot of people. I saw Mrs O’Brien fall in front of the car so obviously I swerved and stopped, and luckily when I jumped out of the car she was sat up, but she was in pain. So we waited for a paramedic to arrive and then an ambulance. There was one lovely lady who waited with Mrs O’Brien.”
Mr Dell said it was a “shock” when he saw Mrs O’Brien fall and that it all happened very quickly. He said: “I did not know if I had hit her or not. The horrible thing was that there were lots of cars going round and people thinking the taxi had hit her.”
He added: “There was no way she could get up. It started to rain and so I got out one of the coats from the back of the car and put it on her. It was just a case of keeping her comfortable till the ambulance came. We were trying to keep her morale up. There were a few laughs and bits of banter to keep her happy.”
It was found at the hospital that Mrs O’Brien had fractured her hip in two places and she required a total hip replacement.
Both Mrs O’Brien, who is recovering well, and Mr Dell were delighted to see each other again at Mrs O’Brien’s Esplanade flat.
Mrs O’Brien handed Mr Dell a thank you card and Mr Dell presented her with a large bouquet.
Mrs O’Brien said: “I’m very glad to be able to meet up with and thank Laurie. I can never thank him enough. I know my family want to thank him too, particularly Tom.”
Mr Dell said: “It’s nice to see that Eileen is recovering well. It’s great to be able to see her and have a catch-up.”