‘Hero’ paramedic who helped Ilford woman survive heart attack loses cancer battle

Tributes have been paid to a “hero” paramedic who died on Friday months after helping save an Ilford mother when she had a heart attack.

Father-of-three, John Reed, 39, featured in the Recorder in August after being part of an ambulance crew hailed as “heroes” by Pezo Benjamin, whose life they saved.

This week Pezo of South Park Drive, Ilford, said: “I was deeply, deeply touched by John’s thoughtfulness at the time of my ordeal.

“John had the presence of mind to ensure that [my baby] Yanis was catered for whilst I was in a critical condition.

“He acquired a tray of formula milk and took it back to my house.


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“A true hero, who went over and above the call of duty to give of himself so freely.

“We will never forget him.”

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John, who grew up in Romford, died after suffering from cancer for several months.

He worked for the London Ambulance Service for ten years.

His father John Reed snr said: “His life was really his family and the ambulance service.

“He was always a very helpful sort of person, a social person, and someone who would look after others.

“He was a larger than life character, who had a big heart and a wicked sense of humour.”

John jnr, who later lived in Halbutt Street, Dagenham, also played the drums and was in the Romford Royal British Legion Band for 10 years between the ages of 15 and 25.

He joined the Ambulance Service in 2002 and carried out his emergency medical technician training at Ilford ambulance station.

He first worked at the Whipps Cross complex (for Whipps Cross, Buckhurst Hill and Ilford ambulance stations) before being posted to Romford in 2006.

He will be having an ambulance service funeral on Wednesday, starting at 2pm at St Andrews Church in Hornchurch, moving on to the ambulance station at Queen’s Hospital in Romford at about 3.15pm, and then at Romford Cemetery at 3.30pm.

All who knew him are welcome.

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