Thank you for my life

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A young footballer who almost died of a heart attack during a game is back home after five weeks in hospital - unable to remember anything about his ordeal.

Ryan Zon, aged 19, survived only because the opposition team was made up of doctors and trainee medics, who revived him as he collapsed.

Ryan Zon at his home in Aston.  He suffered a heart attack during a football matcg and was resuscitated on the pitch

Ryan Zon at his home in Aston. He suffered a heart attack during a football matcg and was resuscitated on the pitch

Two doctors playing rugby on a nearby field also raced to his aid and helped bring him back to life before an ambulance arrived.

Today, back at home with his mum Tracey, Ryan said he owed the medics his life and wanted to praise them for their efforts.

But he revealed is unable to recall anything that happened on the day of his collapse - or from the week before.

“I can’t remember anything that happened to me on the day or even the week before,” Ryan told The Star.

“I can’t even remember waking up in hospital - probably because they had me on so many drugs afterwards.

“All I know is what people have told me happened, that I just dropped down and the opposition players battled to bring me round.

“I wanted to say thank you to them when I was in hospital, and I will always be thankful to them for saving me.

“I want them to be recognised for what they did for me.”

Ryan, who was a promising footballer for Rotherham United and Huddersfield Town academies when he was younger, was playing for Swallownest Miners’ Welfare Reserves when he suffered his cardiac arrest on a pitch off Warminster Road, Norton, Sheffield.

He said he had played football from the day he could walk, and is now having to come to terms with the prospect of never kicking a football again, on doctors’ advice.

“It has certainly been an eventful few weeks and it has been a massive shock,” said Ryan, from Aston.

“But I am just having to take every day as it comes now.

“I just have to get on with things, there’s no point dwelling on it. What has happened has happened and I just have to move on.”

Ryan, who has undergone surgery to have a small defibrillator implanted which will automatically correct his heart rhythm if it alters, said he supports calls for all football clubs to have defibrillator machines pitch-side during games.

“More people would certainly be saved if every club had one for their games,” he added.

Ryan’s mum, Tracey, 47, said: “He is getting there but it’s going to be a long road - even walking upstairs leaves him tired at the moment.

“He can’t play any contact sports any more or do anything that exerts him, so we have sold all his gym equipment and he has a pool table now instead.

“He is going to have to take up less energetic sports. He has always liked fishing, so he will probably do more of that now.

“It is sinking in now how lucky Ryan really was.
“We are just making the most of having him back home.”