Luton Town captain Tom Lockyer urges nation to learn CPR after cardiac arrest on pitch

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He collapsed during a Premier League match against Bournemouth in December

Luton Town captain Tom Lockyer has urged the nation to learn CPR with the British Heart Foundation (BHF) after he suffered a cardiac arrest.

The 29-year-old collapsed during a Premier League game against Bournemouth on December 16, with bystanders and club medics rushing to perform CPR.

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He said it was thanks to these quick actions that his life was saved and now Tom is backing the BHF’s campaign to get the nation to learn CPR this Heart Month.

Tom Lockyer. Picture: Liam SmithTom Lockyer. Picture: Liam Smith
Tom Lockyer. Picture: Liam Smith

Tom, who is about to become a dad for the first time, said if everyone affected by his story learnt CPR, then more people would have a better chance of survival. The BHF estimates that as many as 23 million adults in the UK have never learnt these lifesaving skills.

He said: “I’m an example of the power of CPR, and how it can save lives. I’m so grateful to the people who saved my life, and that I can have special moments with my family like our baby coming very soon.”

The Hatters skipper recalled his memories of his emergency on the pitch. Tom said: “On that day in December, I remember jogging up to the halfway line and becoming lightheaded. I then woke up from a nothingness on the floor and I couldn’t move, I couldn’t speak.

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"Eventually I was able to move and speak. Without the people who reacted quickly by performing CPR and using a defibrillator, I wouldn’t be here today and waiting for my little girl to come into the world.”

For five days, Tom was in hospital and had an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) device fitted. He added: “I have so much to be thankful for. I have my health which is the main thing and I’m really looking forward to the future. If there’s a chance I could be back playing then I would love to.”

The footballer urged everyone to learn CPR to help save a life in the event of a medical emergency.

Tom said: “This Heart Month, I’m calling on everyone to learn CPR with the BHF’s RevivR training tool. It takes just 15 minutes and you could learn how to potentially save a life. With at least five people in the UK suffering an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest every 90 minutes, learning lifesaving CPR can give you the confidence to step in during an emergency.”

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The BHF’s free online training tool RevivR can teach CPR and how to use a defibrillator in just 15 minutes.

Dr Charmaine Griffiths, chief executive of the British Heart Foundation, said: “Late last year, thousands of us across the country witnessed Tom collapse on the pitch and willed him to make a recovery. It is incredible to know that thanks to prompt CPR and defibrillation Tom’s life was saved and it makes it even more poignant to know that he will be here for the birth of his little girl.

“But not everybody is as fortunate, and that’s why we’re urging everyone to learn CPR to help improve survival rates and save more lives. We owe it to Tom and to future generations to ensure that everyone has the skill to help save a life.”