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Widow and girls to swim for defibrillator in Derry Hill
5:00pm Thursday 7th March 2013 in News
Emma Dadd with her daughters Sophie, left, and Chloe; Inset, Martin Dadd who died in February last year
The wife and daughters of car spares dealer Martin Dadd, who collapsed and died at home from an undetected heart condition, are taking part in a sponsored swim to raise money for a defibrillator in their village.
Mr Dadd, 41, collapsed in February last year at home in Lansdowne Crescent, Derry Hill.
His widow Emma, 39, fought to save him as paramedics raced to the house, while their daughters Chloe and Sophie waited anxiously.
She said it was the lack of equipment available to help that inspired the family.
“It took 16 minutes for us to get help,” she said. “It brought it home to me, living in a really rural area, how important it is to have medical equipment on hand.
“If he had been in hospital it wouldn’t have made any difference for him, but it just made me aware that if it had been a straightforward heart attack the equipment would not have been here.”
She said after Mr Dadd’s death, neighbours supported the family by bringing food, or offering to look after the girls, and this was a chance to do something in return.
Mrs Dadd, who was married for 15 years, said: “We have been so well supported in the village that it’s like giving something back.”
The girls, aged 13 and 11 are both pupils at Sheldon School in Chippenham. They decided to raise money for the defibrillator project after reading about it.
Villagers in Derry Hill began fundraising towards a defibrillator, estimated to cost £2,200, at the beginning of last year and need at least another £700. The machine will be accessible to anyone in the local area, who will be given a code to unlock the box and full instructions on how to use it.
The family will swim a mile each, totalling 64 lengths, at Calne Leisure Centre on April 5. They will be supported by Mrs Dadd’s sister Joanna Tweedale, of Wanborough, Swindon, who will count each length.
Mr Dadd was a keen swimmer and swam in county competitions for Cornwall when he was younger.
Mrs Dadd, an administrator at By Brook Valley Primary School in Yatton Keynell, said: “The girls have inherited Martin’s swimming ability. We’ve been doing a bit of training.”
To sponsor the family, call Mrs Dadd on 07855 160652 or email emma.dadd@hotmail. co.uk