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Rugby World Cup winner speaks at DMU about SADS

Former England rugby captain Martin Johnson met students at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) yesterday to raise awareness of a fatal heart condition.

The legendary Tigers star – who led England to World Cup triumph in 2002 - spoke on behalf of the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT) about Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome (SADS).

The former lock is a patron of JHMT and his speech yesterday as part of De Montfort Students’ Union’s (DSU) SADS Awareness Week educated students and staff on how to react to someone suffering from the condition. 

“It can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere and we all need to know what to do”, said Martin.

Martin has known Steve Humphries, Joe’s dad for a long time, even before Joe’s death in 2012 and Martin is a proud Patron of the charity.

He is just one of JHMT’s celebrity supporters and earlier this week, Kasabian bass guitarist Chris Edwards also visited to join students in learning CPR at the Campus Centre.

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Martin Johnson 1

Steve Humphries said: “If you look at the stats in the UK, 60,000 cardiac arrests, 30,000 witnessed in the community by the emergency services and less than 10% survive and in that is young people.

“We have to change that, we have to shift that. In other countries, it is 50-60% and that is because young people know how to save a life.

“That’s why we’re doing this and why we’re doing it here. We want to have a heart safe campus and strengthen that chain of survival.”

Martin said: “The main aims of the charity are awareness of SADS in young people and then training CRP so that people know how to react.

“Alongside that, ensuring there is access to a defibrillator and everyone is educated in how to use them.

“You walk around here and there at hundreds of fire extinguishers. There should a defibrillator too.”

You can find out more about JHMT’s work on their website.

Posted on: Friday 06 October 2017

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