A mother and daughter who survived the Manchester Arena bombing have spoken of their “second chance at life”.Ruth Murrell and her 13-year-old daughter Emily are still receiving treatment for serious injuries sustained in the blast on 22 May.They joined other survivors to present a Pride of Britain Award to the medics who helped those injured.Mrs Murrell said: “We are very lucky to be here and we appreciate every day.”Twenty-two people were killed and 512 injured when Salman Abedi detonated a bomb packed with nuts and bolts after an Ariana Grande concert at the Arena.Emily suffered seven shrapnel wounds – one went through her ankle and another bolt passed through her mother’s leg.
Both Emily and her mum, from Copster Green in Lancashire, were kept in hospital for six weeks.In their first interview about their experiences they felt “very lucky” to be treated on the same ward at Manchester Children’s Hospital. Mrs Murrell said: “When we met up with a lot of the other survivors we found out stories like a mother would be in Bolton hospital whereas her daughter was in Manchester hospital and the dad was having to run between the two, so we were very lucky.”Emily said she enjoyed “chatting to the nurses, and they’d do our hair sometimes. It was just really nice to have a connection with them”.Both praised “lovely, awesome” Grande, who paid a surprise visit to injured fans in the wake of the atrocity.”I just cried my eyes out, I couldn’t believe it – I was a bit star-struck,” Emily said.Mrs Murrell said: “She’s a young girl herself and to have that at a concert and know the consequences – we can’t envisage how she was managing.”But she came in really late at night and she took the time to make sure she visited every single patient who had been injured. “She was visibly upset but at the same time so encouraging.”
Emily is now back at St Augustine’s RC High School in Billington, where staff have been “absolutely phenomenal”.”We can’t thank them enough because even when we were in hospital we had teachers coming to visit,” Mrs Murrell said. “And then when Emily was ready to go back to school, they accommodated every whim that we needed. They spoke to all the pupils beforehand, they’ve offered counselling. They’ve just been amazing.”She added: “We’ve still got a journey and it’s still very raw. “We’re both still under hospital treatment, receiving therapy, physiotherapy and burns and plastics. “However we’ve got this second chance at life and a real opportunity to make the most of it. So that’s what we intend to do.”An independent review into claims some victims did not get expert medical help for more than an hour is under way.
Source: BBC Lancashire