I didn’t want a materialistic present for my birthday this year. Instead, I wanted to do something for the people who gave me the best present of all, my Pappy’s life. So, I'm doing a skydive as a present for my 21st birthday.

I thought it would be great to raise some money and awareness for the Adult Intensive Care Unit at Royal Brompton Hospital. My reason for choosing Royal Brompton is because I will never be able to thank them enough for saving my Pappy's (Grandad) life, a man who I have spent every day of my life with!

In November 2015, my Pappy became critically ill. He was admitted to Gloucester Royal Hospital Critical Care Unit, but after 10 days of being on a life support machine, they had come to the end of the treatment that they could give Pappy. The consultant at Gloucester Hospital told us that he was going to contact Royal Brompton Hospital to see if they could help. It turned out my Pappy had complete lung failure but that Royal Brompton had a machine - an extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation machine, or ECMO - that could take over the job of his lungs while they were repaired.

A team of doctors from Royal Brompton were helicoptered down to Gloucester on a Thursday evening to put Pappy onto ECMO before transferring him back to the Adult Intensive Care Unit. They travelled through the night by ambulance, and he arrived at Royal Brompton in the early hours of Friday morning.

Pappy spent 24 days in the Adult Intensive Care Unit and they saved his life. Pappy doesn't remember being at Royal Brompton but we have told him what they did for him and how they saved his life. The staff at Royal Brompton also helped us keep a journal so that Pappy would be able to see what treatment he had received.

The staff at Royal Brompton Hospital were miracle workers and my family, Pappy and I will never be able to thank them enough. Every single thing about this hospital is amazing. The care that Pappy was given was wonderful, and the care that was given to us, as relatives, was phenomenal too. Nothing was ever too much for any of the staff and Pappy and our family were always treated so kindly and sympathetically.

We will never ever be able to thank them enough, because if it wasn't for Royal Brompton I wouldn't have my Pappy here today. We will always be forever grateful to them.

– Courteney French