December 23, 2020 5.01 pm This story is over 41 months old

Tribute to paramedic who died of COVID-19

“Tony was without doubt an NHS hero”

A much-loved employee of the East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) sadly died of coronavirus this week and his family, colleagues and friends have paid tribute to him.

Tony Chadbourne, often known as Chad or Chadders, worked in the ambulance service for 23 years in both the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire divisions.

He recently received his 20 years long service medal at EMAS and his family described him as an “NHS hero who dedicated his life to his career”.

Tony stared his career as an Ambulance Technician with the Lincolnshire Patient Transport Service in 1997.

He moved to the accident and emergency side of the service two years later before moving to the Nottinghamshire division, where he qualified as a paramedic in 2007.

He worked as a Team Leader at Beechdale Ambulance Station until he transferred to Newark Ambulance Station in 2017.

Whilst continuing to respond to patients as a paramedic, he worked as a Clinical Operations Manager based in Newark. In November he was promoted to a secondment position of Duty Operations Manager.

Family tribute

A tribute from his family – his mum and Martyn, Kate, Oliver, Ann, Iain and Matt – read: “As a family we are absolutely devastated at the loss of our beloved Tony.

“Everyone who knew him knows he had three major loves in his life: his family and friends; football – travelling to watch Nottingham Forest and England at home and abroad; and his role as a paramedic.

“Tony was without doubt an NHS hero who dedicated his life to his career. As he rose up through the ranks nothing was too much trouble for Tony whose huge heart meant he went above and beyond for his patients, colleagues and friends. He cared deeply for his colleagues who were also some of his best friends – his work family.

“Tony was humble to the core; only after the event would we hear about the lives he’d saved, the babies he’d delivered and the absolute commitment he gave to the frontline during 23 years of service.

“He was an NHS hero but he was our hero. Our rock. Our beloved son, brother, uncle and friend. Tony has left behind a heart broken family who loved him beyond words.

“Tony was proud to be part of an extended Polish family and he will be dearly missed by Mimi, Marysia, Darek and all his family in Poland.

“The whole family would like to give thanks to all the incredible staff at EMAS, Queen’s Medical Centre and Nottingham City Hospital who cared for Tony and fought so hard to try to save him.”

Alastair Smith, Tony’s EMAS colleague and friend, said: “‘Chad’ loved his job and was an excellent Paramedic and manager. His greatest strength as a manager was the support he extended to all his colleagues.

“Nothing was ever too much trouble for Chad and he would often stay after his working hours, to the detriment of his own personal plans, to ensure that his colleagues received the highest level of support possible.

“The heart-breaking news of Chad’s death whilst impacting us all across EMAS, is devastating for his family who have lost their rock. Whilst I know his mum and brother are distraught they are both immensely proud of Tony’s achievements, especially his recent promotion.”

Richard Henderson, East Midlands Ambulance Service Chief Executive said: “Losing Chad is incredibly sad, and it’s difficult to find the words to express how colleagues across the service will be feeling as they hear this devastating news.

“My thoughts are with Chad’s family, and his close colleagues and good friends, many of whom will be at work today and over the coming weeks; continuing to provide emergency and urgent care for those who need it.”