Iceland boss thanks paramedics for saving his life after collapse at London Marathon

Iceland boss thanks paramedics for saving his life after collapse at London Marathon

The CEO of Iceland has praised paramedics who saved his life after he collapsed just over a mile before the finish line of the London Marathon.

Richard Walker said he had no memory of collapsing during the race and woke up to St John’s Ambulance paramedics packing ice on him.

The supermarket boss had been competing in his first ever marathon alongside his Iceland colleague Simon Felstead to raise money for Alzheimer Research UK.

He wrote on Instagram: “It was very bizarre - last year I climbed Everest but now maybe I had a bit of Everest arrogance and I didn't train enough and pushed myself way too hard and beyond my limit.

“I was unconscious for about half an hour and then came around covered in ice and I didn't know where I was and I had no memory of it.

“It was terrifying really and I had no idea, no recollection of running the race and I was very scared.

“They told me I could've died and it was hyperthermic shock - my temperature was 42 degrees and rising, after it hit 42 they stopped measuring it.”

Mr Walker, 43, praised the paramedics who remained with him until his recovery.

“St John's Ambulance are just amazing,” he said.

“Just hats off to them and obviously all the runners who were there supporting charity.

“Alzheimer Research UK is so important to me but now I have a new favourite charity.”

Mr Walker’s father Malcolm founded Iceland in 1970. He joined the company in 2012 after working as a chartered surveyor.

The run comes a year after Mr Walker successfully summited Mount Everest to help raise £1.1m for Iceland’s Charitable Foundation.

More than 50,000 people ran the 26.2 mile London Marathon on Saturday, including politicians, actors in character and amateurs in costume.

Runners of all ages completed the route for charity, with a number breaking records in costume.

Lee Baynton, 39, from Essex, clocked the fastest-ever marathon in an inflatable costume while raising money for a local hospice.

Warren Parish, 41, from Cannock, beat the Guinness World Record for the fastest marathon dressed as a cheerleader.