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Man who claims he died during coma says he woke up to see ghost woman in red coat

It should have been a ‘simple’ operation to help blood flow in his legs but Andrew Elliker-Reeve’s life changed forever after he woke up from a 10-day coma blind and missing a colon

Andrew Elliker-Reeve's operation took a turn for the worse when he woke up blind after a 10-day coma
Andrew Elliker-Reeve’s operation took a turn for the worse when he woke up blind after a 10-day coma

A man who “momentarily died” has said he woke up from a coma seeing a ghost woman in a red coat.

Andrew Elliker-Reeve was in need of vital surgery to aid the blood flow in his legs but what was meant to be a “simple fix”, ended up changing his life forever.

The 63-year-old underwent surgery at York Hospital in 2020 but due to complications, was left with “four emergency operations in four days” and ended up in a 10-day coma.

When he woke up, he realised that he had lost his sight.

He told YorkshireLive : “I came out of a coma with no colon, no functioning spleen and no sight. It wasn’t easy at all. It took a while to come to terms with it.

“I’ve got to admit this came as a hell of a shock. I clearly wasn’t going to be reading those books I bought.”

The 63-year-old is navigating his new life as a blind man
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Image:

Andrew Elliker-Reeve)

Mr Elliker-Reeve, who was born in Durham but lived in North Yorkshire for much of his life, said he was fit and healthy before “the brakes started to come off”.

“Before the operation I had trouble walking, and wanted to get back into marathon running but sadly the operation hadn’t gone as hoped. I was in a coma for ten days, missing a colon, and had a wee bag,” he said.

He believes the reason for the operation “shock” was due to a blood flow problem which saw his nerves trapped “across the body”.

He added: “In my opinion I died at one point during the coma.

“After that, my brain became affected and I started having very vivid dream and hallucinations. Even now I see this ghost woman in a red coat, and before have seen visions of a dog in front of the TV.”

The dramatic change in his physical and mental state proved difficult for the 63-year-old.

“I got to the point where I couldn’t see the purpose in life, I didn’t want to be here, and I didn’t want to be a burden to anyone”, said Mr Elliker-Reeve, who recently moved from North to East Yorkshire.

Andrew’s ‘terrific’ wife helped him get through the most difficult times post surgery
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Image:

Andrew Elliker-Reeve)

Thankfully, he said his “amazing” wife helped him push forward and think more positively about his future in 2022.

He began going into schools to tell young people about what had happened to him.

He said: “Kids think they’re invincible so I wanted to be honest about what can happen. I was a fit and healthy man and this happened to me.”

Together with his wife, he made his own blog called Travelling Blind where he shares the ups and downs of paving his wave through life as a blind man.

He has raked in thousands of followers on his Facebook page and says he “loves making people smile every day”.

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He said: “It has given me power back and positivity. I am loving it, it feels great. There is one man who always comments on my posts as his wife is going blind so they can relate.

“It is such a heartbreaking subject but I like making light of the situation and showing that while it is hard, this is a new exciting challenge in my life. It’s been incredible for me it’s kept me alive.”

Now, Mr Elliker-Reeve wants people to get involved with his Blind Toast and Marmalade challenge in aide of Guide Dogs UK.

He said he wants the challenge to “go viral” – participants pay £2 and post a video of them blindfolded attempting to spread Marmalade, or a topping of their choice, on top of their toast.

“I get up every morning and it is difficult for me to spread my Marmalade on my toast, so I thought the challenge would be a way for people to see the every day struggle that blind people go through, while having a little fun and making one and other laugh.”

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