Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

BACK FROM THE BRINK; Richard Is Home after Holiday Hell

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

BACK FROM THE BRINK; Richard Is Home after Holiday Hell

Article excerpt

Byline: By SAM BEATTIE

HOURS into his Spanish holiday a young Teesside man's trip had turned into a nightmare - and he was lying in intensive care with four stab wounds.

But now back in Middlesbrough with his mum and the rest of his family, 20-year-old Richard Ward said he was just glad to be home in Marton.

As revealed by the Gazette last month, Richard, who was part of a Teesside stag party, was attacked when the group went out in the Levante area of Benidorm.

Two members of the party were mistakenly held by Spanish police for his attempted murder.

Richard's anxious mum, Shirley, flew out to be by her son's side as he spent four days in intensive care with a punctured lung and stab wounds and another 11 days recovering.

"I was only meant to be over there for three days," said Richard, who has had to put his plans of working as a scaffolding labourer at Wilton on hold as a result of his injuries.

"When I woke up in hospital I was trying to remember what happened. I still can't remember.

"But I couldn't wait to get out of there. I'm just glad to be home."

Shirley only found out about Richard's ordeal when she got the chilling call fromhis uncle, who was also on the holiday.

The mum-of-three, who works in the Children's Ward at James Cook University Hospital, recalled: "His uncle said 'don't panic but Richard's seriously hurt'. You can imagine how that made me feel.

"He was the youngest in the group, he was one of the quietest so I just couldn't believe it.

"If I didn't work in a hospital and didn't know exactly how his condition was, I'd have been panicking even more. When he came out of intensive care I knew he'd be all right.

"My phone bill was pounds 98. Everyone wanted to know how he was and you have to keep in touch with people when they're so worried."

Richard will have to wear a pot for six weeks after a group of between 20 and 25 attackers stamped on his leg, breaking his foot in several places. …

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