Waiting for him to wake up and say
"Only joking Mum!"
Daniel Hughes was a young man of 28 with the rest of his life to look forward to. On the night of the 18th March 2015 he had been sitting with and talking to his parents, Sue and Dave, over dinner. At around 9:30 he walked past the living room door and said "I'm going up now Dad" to which Dave replied "O.K. son, see you later".
In the early hours of the 19th March Dan's heart stopped and he slipped peacefully away in his sleep. When he failed to get up for work in the morning Sue knocked his door expecting for him to have overslept-but when he failed to repond she realised all was not well. She entered his room, looked at him asleep and knew the worst thing imaginable had
happened. She phoned the emergency services who advised her to perform CPR unitl the first responders arrived. Sue is CPR trained and knowing what to do she fought for her son like any mother would but in her heart she knew that it was too late. When the emergency services arrived the doctor took one look at Dan and confirmend that he had died. There were no signs that Dan had suffered, he was in a normal sleeping position and there was no look of distress in his face.
A fit and healthy young man
If ever there was a role model for the way we are meant to live our lives then Dan is that example. Never smoked-didn't do drugs-watched what he ate-kept himself fit-wasnt overweight. Yes, he enjoyed a drink with his mates on a weekend and occasionaly had a couple to many- who hasn't at that age! But he never got into any trouble and would walk away from confrontation rather than get involved in an argument. Dan was a postman
with one of the toughest rounds covering Mow Cop, he played football every Saturday and Sunday for Alsagers Bank FC and was captain of the Saturday team. He attended the True Grit Gym once or twice a week with the football team when outdoor training was not possible. Dan had completed 2 'potters' arf marathons' in respectable sub 2 hour times. Holidays to him would to the Alps where he enjoyed snowboarding; he was a lifelong Stoke
fan and season ticket holder. He was healthy - he was happy .....
So what happened?
Dan's post mortem returned Sudden Adult Death Syndrome (SADS) as the cause of death. All his major organs were perfectly normal including his heart even though it had stopped. There were no warning signs, no chest pains, no headaches, no lack of breath or anything else to indicate that he was going to lose his life so suddenly. There are no words to convey the sadness and emptiness that have befallen Dan's family and friends since that sad day back in March 2015 but his passing has brought into focus the need for young people to have heart screening so that potential life threatening conditions can be detected and treated before more lives are lost.