Freda Payne: Band of GoldiTunesAmazon

Freda Payne: Band of GoldiTunesAmazon

Family of remarkable Rose thank helicopter heroes

Family of remarkable Rose thank helicopter heroes

Published at 1:05pm 24th February 2016. (Updated at 5:12pm 24th February 2016)

A 94-year-old Knaresborough lady's family are taking to the skies to thank Yorkshire Air Ambulance for saving her life.

Rose Smiles suffered a head injury and severe leg injuries after being hit by a car whilst crossing the High Street last September.

Within minutes, she was airlifted to Leeds General Infirmary where surgeons had to amputate her left leg below the knee.

Her right leg was also badly damaged and Rose is now wheelchair-bound.

Her daughter, Maggie Maltby, said: "Until the accident, Mum was completely independent and walked into Knaresborough most days. A lot of people know her, she's a bit of a character.

"Doctors did not expect Mum to survive, but after her second major operation, they realised they were not dealing with a typical 94-year-old.

"She is just amazing, but without Yorkshire Air Ambulance, she would not be here. She needed surgery as soon as possible and a journey by land ambulance to Leeds would have taken around 45 minutes.

"The crew were brilliant and got her where she needed to be in minutes. We are just so grateful."

Rose has six children, 12 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Her large, close-knit family are now determined to raise as much money as possible for the rapid response emergency charity.

They have set a target of £12,000 - the amount it costs every day to keep Yorkshire's two air ambulances flying.

Maggie and two of Rose's grandchildren, Ellie and Sarah Priest from Brighton, will be doing a sponsored skydive on Saturday.

The family are also planning to do the Three Peaks Challenge in April.

Maggie, 65, from Knaresborough, said: "The three of us are terrified about doing the jump, but we want to raise as much money as possible.

"I think, as a family, the fundraising is really important, as it ensures something good comes out of what has been such an horrendous time."

You can support Maggie and her nieces at www.justgiving.com/Ellie-Priest2