The remarkable courage of an inspirational stroke survivor from Coleraine has been celebrated at the Northern Ireland Life After Stroke Awards.
Seventy-three year old David Boyd from Castlerock received the Adult Courage Award at the recent Northern Ireland Life After Stroke Awards. The gala event took place at the Hilton Templepatrick as part of Make May Purple – the annual campaign to raise awareness of stroke. The award ceremony was hosted by BBC presenter and Stroke Association patron Noel Thompson.
The Northern Ireland Life After Stroke Awards celebrates the achievements of stroke survivors, carers, health professionals and volunteers throughout Northern Ireland.
David, a retired Royal Navy chef, has faced a number of serious health conditions in recent years and has down incredible courage and indomitable spirit. David describes his health problems as “a little bit horrendous”. David had a stroke in 2014 just four weeks after he had a heart attack. Just six months later David underwent a quadruple heart by-pass and was also diagnosed with a benign brain tumour. Despite all his health problems, David has maintained an incredibly positive attitude and generous spirit by continuing to attend the Stroke Association Portstewart Group and supporting fellow stroke survivors. Stroke Association group leader Sharon Millar describes David as a “tower of strength” for other stroke survivors and says his example is an inspiration to others.
Tom Richardson, Northern Ireland Director, Stroke Association said:
“In just a few short years David has faced more health challenges than many people do in a life time. Despite all this David is always smiling. He is brave and faces every challenge head on. Sadly, he recently received news that he will need to undergo another operation to remove a tumour and of course we all wish him well. David takes everything in his stride. He is a much valued member of the local stroke group. He volunteers his time and helps others in their recovery. He is an inspiration to everyone and a very worthy winner of the Adult Courage Award”.
More than 100 nominations were received for the Northern Ireland Life After Stroke Awards. 8 awards were presented at the event and included awards for volunteers, stroke health professionals and carers.
Speaking after the awards David said:
“I was dumbfounded at first when I had a stroke. How dare my brain let me down? But as soon as I had it I was determined that in no way would it alter what I consider to be a worthwhile life. I’m totally flabbergasted to receive this award. Meeting other stroke patients over the years I’ve seen so many people who are worse off than me. Helping others to achieve what [the recovery] I have so far achieved is a tremendous honour. It makes me feel good when I see them responding. He makes me very happy indeed”.
The Stroke Association is a charity that is changing the world for people affected by stroke. They work with thousands of stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals, with scientists and researchers, and with supporters to conquer stroke. For more information visit www.stroke.org.uk