Westcliff man recalls 3am kidney transplant alert

Usually, a knock on the door in the middle of the night heralds bad news but for Westcliff resident Paul Rudd it brought news of a life-saving kidney transplant.

And it was PC Alex Watt and PC Sam Hudson, from Southend Local Policing Team, who were asked to make the call.

Sam said: “It was quite a welcome change as we usually deliver bad news. But this was god news and Mr Rudd was able to get his transplant.”

Now a grateful Mr Rudd, his wife Buschra and daughter Isabella, four, have thanked the pair over a cup of coffee.

Mr Rudd said: “Had they not come round, I don’t know where I’d be today. They got me into a taxi and I got a life-saving operation. Had it not happened, I would still have been on dialysis and quite weak.

“But now I’m on the road to recovery and I owe it all to Alex and Sam and Essex Police for coming to my aid. I really can’t thank them enough.”

It was 3am on Friday August 21 when Alex and Sam were assigned to call at the Rudd’s house because the Royal London Hospital had been trying unsuccessfully to reach Mr Rudd to tell him a kidney had become available for transplant.

Mr Rudd had been on the transplant list since November 2019, having started suffering kidney problems three years ago.

Alex said: “We parked round the corner and knocked on the door. Mrs Rudd couldn’t see the car and, initially, she wouldn’t let us in and asked us to prove who we were. I said ‘It’s about Paul and his kidney’ so then she knew that it was safe to open the door.”

Mr Rudd was in a taxi five minutes after Alex and Sam left and arrived shortly afterwards at the hospital, where he later had the transplant.

He said: “It’s been absolutely amazing. I started dialysis during lockdown when transplant operations were frozen. But the call came the second week after surgeries resumed.

“The operation was five hours and, when I came round, there were immediate signs the kidney was working.

“It is a life-changer. It’s priceless.

“People are quick to criticise the police as they don’t see this side of things.”

Mrs Rudd added: “Before, it was all about whether Paul would get a kidney and wondering what was going to happen. Now we can plan again.”

Alex added: “It was nice to meet the Rudds again. Sometimes we leave and we don’t get to hear the ending.”

Paul Rudd recalls the night Alex and Sam knocked on his door with good news: https://youtu.be/-q4MEEi1QHg

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Mick Ferris

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