Tyne & Wear

Pc David Rathband's Blue Lamp Foundation in first award

John Eames, left and Pc David Rathband
Image caption John Eames, left, received a cheque from Pc David Rathband

The policeman blinded by gunman Raoul Moat has made the first award from a charity he set up to help injured emergency service personnel.

Pc David Rathband, 43, launched his Blue Lamp Foundation after being shot in the face by Moat a year ago.

The charity, which has raised about £130,000, awarded £2,500 to paramedic John Eames, whose legs were shattered when a lorry hit his ambulance.

Mr Eames, 38, has been unable to walk since the incident in February.

Mr Eames cannot return to the home he shares with wife Sarah in Burton, Staffordshire, because it is not suitable for his wheelchair. The award will help him adapt the house.

'Living proof'

His ambulance was hit by a Polish lorry driver who was driving on the wrong side of the road.

Mr Eames said: "It's a privilege to be the first recipient of the charity. It will finally let me go home and make my life so much easier.

"There have been a lot of lows and highs since I was injured and this is definitely one of the highs."

PC Rathband said: "I'm absolutely elated that we have made our first award.

"This is the culmination of what we set out to do. John is living proof that my foundation is here to help."

As well as Pc Rathband, Moat also shot his ex-girlfriend and killed her new boyfriend before shooting himself after a manhunt.

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