The drama unfolded in Greengate Lane, Chapeltown, at 8.10am on Friday, May 10, when Matthew Elliott was driving to his day job working in the finance department of a construction company when he noticed several people gathered around an elderly man laid on the floor.
But his sense of responsibility as a special police constable kicked in – and he turned his car around to return to the scene and offer to help the stricken man.
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The 21-year-old Crosspool man performed CPR and also used a nearby defibrillator to try and kickstart the man's heartbeat.
An ambulance arrived a short while afterwards and took the 87-year-old man to hospital. He was in a coma for a while but is recovering well.
After The Star exclusively revealed the story, the elderly man’s son has now come forward and spoken to Matt to pass on his thanks.
The man, who did not want to be named, said: “My dad is 87 and it looked like he didn't have a chance. He is now out of a coma and talking to us all.
“All the medical staff are amazed at his progress and agree that the excellent work performed by the officer at the scene is the reason he is still here. “My family and I were desperate to find out who the off duty officer was and thank him. The officer is an absolute hero to us.”
Matthew praised police for giving him the skills in his training to handle such a situation.
Said Matthew: “I have always fancied joining the police force and thought why not give the specials a go.
“You only have to do 16 hours a month volunteering as a minimum and you get to do all kinds of stuff.
“I strongly recommend it, it really gives you a confidence boost. And the training really paid off in this situation in particular.”
For more information about becoming a special constable visit https://www.southyorks.police.uk/sign-up/to-volunteer-with-syp/to-be-a-special-constable/about-special-constables/