A teenage bomb victim has vowed to become a nurse after her life was saved by the NHS.
Eve Senior, 15 – seriously hurt in the Manchester Arena atrocity – was among dozens of patients and celebrities saluting the health service’s 70th birthday today.
She was seen limping, bloodied and bandaged, from the blast at an Ariana Grande gig in May last year.
Eve was left with 18 shrapnel wounds, burns and a severed nerve in her leg when she was caught up in the bombing as she left the concert
She said: “Before Manchester, I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grow up, but staying in hospital and seeing what the nurses do and how good they are, when I am older, I want to be a nurse.”
The teenager said that the staff who treated her at the Manchester Children’s Hospital over the course of nearly a year can “now be classed as friends”.
Eve spoke at York Minster tonight – one of several celebration services held around the country to mark the NHS anniversary.
She was given a standing ovation by an audience of health leaders and NHS staff past and present following her speech.
It was one of thousands of Big 7Tea parties held, and buildings including the Houses of Parliament and Blackpool Tower were lit up in NHS blue.
TV stars including Cheryl Tweedy and Katie Piper tweeted their thanks, with both saying they owed the NHS a huge debt of gratitude.
Another Manchester bomb survivor, 15-year-old Freya Lewis – saved by 70 hours of surgery – told a Westminster Abbey reception: “I don’t have the words to express how grateful I am to all the amazing staff. I’m only alive and here today because of the incredible care I received.”
NHS nurse Erika Boulton, 31, had extra cause to celebrate as her daughter was born at 5.44am.
The unnamed 9lb girl was delivered at University College Hospital, London. Erika, with husband James, 33, said: “This is a special day for us, because we have just become parents for the first time. It means a lot to me that my baby’s birth date is also the birth date of the NHS.”
Dr Martin Griffiths, a leading trauma surgeon who ran a team treating victims of the London Bridge terrorist attack, said: “There is a part of me that still finds it amazing to be a part of this fantastic institution that provides top quality medical care to any citizen that needs it, regardless of their income or background.
“I stand with my brothers and sisters who defied the monsters in Manchester and I stand with my friends and colleagues who served London so magnificently at Westminster, London Bridge, Finsbury Park, and of course, Grenfell.”
June Rosen, 78, told how, as a child, she served Nye Bevan his breakfast on the morning the founding father launched the NHS at Manchester’s Trafford Hospital.
He had stayed at her home as her father was a local Labour councillor.
Mrs Rosen, who went on to be an NHS physiotherapist, said: “I remember him sitting up in bed in striped pyjamas with a shock of grey hair. Then off he went. A little cameo of history.”
Source: UK Mirror