THE front page story ('This Helmet Saved My Life' - Feb 29) on cyclist Peter Hughes struck a chord with me relating to a similar incident that occurred around three years ago when my eldest daughter was taking part in a charity ride around Brisbane in support of Cancer research.
My daughter lives on the Gold Coast and is a seasoned cyclist as is her husband who rode professionally for some years in Europe.
The pair ride every day and competitively every weekend and their idea of an early morning heart starter is a 4.30am start, 40km ride around the hills behind the Gold Coast, back for a bowl of homemade muesli and off to work.
The Brisbane Charity ride took the riders out by Princess Alexandra Hospital and on a downhill run at speed another rider came in too close and clipped my daughter's front wheel, sending her over the handle bars and head first into a concrete culvert. The impact split her helmet in two from front to back, the chin strap jerked her head back bruising her neck and face and on-the-spot paramedics fitted a neck brace fearing a broken neck before rushing her unconscious into Princess Alexandra Emergency.
My daughter was x-rayed immediately, showing severe bruising around the head area and of the throat and back of the neck, but thankfully no broken bones, but as there sometimes comes something unexplainable, the Doctor brought in the x-rays next morning and pointed to a tumour that was located in the left side of my daughters thyroid gland.
Later test results proved positive and when she had recovered from the crash, the left half of her thyroid was successfully removed.
The year before before, my wife had been a cancer patient in Princess Alexandra receiving radiation treatment and had passed away later that year.
My daughter has this firm belief that her Mother pushed her off the bike that day and in doing so, saved her life. I know the helmet had a lot to do with that.
Fred Perring, Halfway Creek