July 27th 2019 was a proud day for the NIHR SRMRC and ex-patient, Mr Rory Curtis, alike as he opened his very own barber shop – Charlie Parker’s- in Worcester.
Rory, a former semi-professional footballer, suffered a brain haemorrhage and a diffused brain injury, and needed to have a metal rod inserted in his hip when he was involved in a road traffic accident in August 2012. Mr Curtis made headlines around the world when he awoke from his 6-day coma speaking fluent French. Rory, when interviewed, said that he “can’t explain how it happened. It’s incredible really…I was just casually chatting away about how I was feeling in this perfect French accent.”
When Rory first arrived at QEHB, his parents, Mr and Mrs Curtis, were approached by the senior research nurse from NIHR SRMRC trauma research team. They agreed for Rory to be entered into a trial called “SYNAPSE” which was investigating the effectiveness and safety of using a hormone called progesterone to treat patients who have suffered a severe head injury. Rory’s mum expressed that “The care Rory received was fantastic and Rory retains information tremendously well. He has an amazing zest for life.”
Now, Rory has opened up a barber shop in Worcester where he is raising money for QEHB Charity with its Grand Opening. Rory said: “The care I had was incredible, everyone was at hand when I needed them. I was in such shock when I got there because of the accident but everyone was so understanding, and there for my friends and family, not just me. They were like a little family, not just doctors and nurses.” Rory added, “We’re raising money for QEHB Charity because I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for the care and support I received from the staff there.”
Rory’s consultant, Professor Tony Belli added “Rory’s condition was critical when I first met him. As a surgeon, but also as somebody who really got to know Rory, it brings me great joy to see him doing so well and be so successful. I know I speak for all of us who knew Rory when I say that we are overjoyed at his remarkable achievements and will continue to follow his success stories with great pride.”
All of us here at the NIHR SRMRC would like to sincerely thank Rory for all his efforts, and we wish him the best of luck for the future!