A charity has praised a firefighter and a supermarket manager who came together to make life better for an elderly couple.
The “extra mile” efforts of St Mary’s firefighter Stuart Vince and Asda store manager Ian Miller were called “fantastic” by the boss of Age UK Southampton.
Watch Manager Vince of Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service attended an incident where it was understood an elderly man was trapped in his home.
On arrival it was found the man had fallen down and was unable to get up so firefighters helped him to his feet and waited with him until his carers arrived.
During the course of his visit Watch Manager Vince noticed the television was broken but the 93 year old man said he and his 91 year old wife had been unable to replace it.
The firefighter decided to visit all the supermarkets in the area until he had managed to get the couple a new one but he only got as far as his first stop.
Store manager Ian Miller, who runs the Marlands branch of Asda, immediately handed over a flat screen television worth £200 which the firefighter took back and installed for the jubilant couple.
The charity’s chief officer Peter Bennie said:
“This started with exemplary alertness of the firefighter and his practical skills of looking around, identifying a problem and solving it.
“For both the firefighter and the store manager to go the extra mile like this to improve somebody’s quality of life is fantastic and a great example of teamwork.”
The elderly couple thanked the firefighter and store manager but wished to remain anonymous.
Watch Manager Vince said the pair were thrilled and he was extremely grateful to the supermarket for making this possible.
“With the television broken the couple were just left staring at four walls.
“Being unable to get out much watching television was something they enjoyed doing together and I just didn’t want to leave them staring at the blank spot where the television used to be.
“Being a firefighter is about helping people in the community whenever you can not just about putting out fires.”
Mr Miller added:
“We were delighted to help with this request and work with the fire service. At Asda we like to think we are at the heart of the community and this was a way for us to make a huge difference to an elderly couple’s quality of life.”
Age UK Southampton boss Mr Bennie also praised Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service initiatives such as the Safe and Well visits and STEER exercise classes.