ONE year and one day ago, Geoff Choveaux’s life hung in the balance.
The “jumper leads” were put on his chest eight times, re-starting his heart when it stopped beating numerous times.
Today, the Yungaburra rose farmer has provided 50 bunches of roses for sale, with funds raised going towards “Team McGuinness”, a husband and wife duo riding in the Mount Franklin Cardiac Challenge.
While Mary, a midwife at Cairns Hospital, was not available to help sell roses, her colleague Melissa Marshall put her salesperson skills to the test.
Ms Marshall met Mr Choveaux’s partner at a Tableland markets recently, started chatting about the anniversary of his medical condition and offered the roses as a fundraiser.
“I don’t ride a bike,” Ms Marshall said, “But this is my way of helping out.”
Mr Choveaux was in Atherton delivering roses when he started to “feel a bit funny”.
“I was going to drive home to Yungaburra, but then I thought I’d drive to the doctor and then I thought ‘No, I think I’ll just drive straight to hospital’.”
Which he did, but then found he could not get out of the car as he was too weak and giddy, so he telephoned his partner Eve-Lyn McGrath, who called the hospital directly and staff raced out to help him. This happened around noon.
“They put the jumper leads (defibrillator) on me seven times in Atherton and another time in Cairns, and the helicopter flew me down to Cairns, where they cleared out the blockage and put a stent in. I’m very lucky,” Mr Choveaux said.
He was resting comfortably in the ward by the time his partner arrived at the Cairns Hospital at 5pm.
“This is our little way of saying thank you to all the staff who looked after us and maybe helping provide equipment to help someone else,” he said.