Home Royal News Patient jokes he hopes William wasn’t piloting his helicopter – to find out he was!

Patient jokes he hopes William wasn’t piloting his helicopter – to find out he was!

by Victoria Howard

One injured man, assisted by the East Anglian Air Ambulance Service, was surprised to find The Duke of Cambridge helping him – seconds after joking he hoped the Prince wasn’t flying the helicopter.

Jim Schembri, 37, was being treated by paramedics flown in on an air ambulance after a tree branch collapsed, leaving him with a dislocated shoulder and hip. His injuries required attention from medics, and potentially a quick flight to hospital.

Image: Jim Schembri is rescued near Wisbech, Cambs, after he had an accident on a tree

Jim Schembri (seen on stretcher) was helped by Prince William (middle, kneeling), who works for the East Anglian Air Ambulance. ADAM REEVE / GEOFF ROBINSON PHOTOGRAPHY

“It wasn’t until they were actually loading me into the helicopter that it clicked,” he told Good Morning Britain, his arm still in a sling.

“I said, ‘Old Willsy better not be flying this thing.’ He [Prince William] turned around and said, ‘I’ve been holding your head for the last 30 minutes.'”

He added: “I was so drugged up on ketamine that I went, ‘Oh well, you better come see me [in the hospital] then.'”

Speaking about the Duke’s role in the team, he said: “Just a valued part of that team as any other member. The fact that he is a royal, future King of England, doing a normal man’s job. And what everyone seems people forget he donates all his wages back to the air ambulance.”

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“He was comforting me the whole time and telling me exactly what he was doing. He had a very calm demeanour and there was no flapping.

“He was extremely good at his job. I was very lucky. It was the best care I could ever have asked for.”

When questioned about William’s skills in the cockpit, he said: “He was very smooth.”

William, who started the piloting job back in July, stayed with Schembri for 40 minutes in A&E after the incident on 22nd March in Cambridgeshire.

When asked if the Prince had called on him afterwards, Schembri replied ‘no’ but added: “A text would be nice.”

 

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