Old stretcher raising cash for St John

By Kaysha Brownlie -
The old stretcher, which belonged to former St John ambulance officer Peter Gibson, has been listed on Trade Me with all funds being donated to St John Napier.
The old stretcher, which belonged to former St John ambulance officer Peter Gibson, has been listed on Trade Me with all funds being donated to St John Napier.

The daughter of a former Napier ambulance officer is putting her late father's ambulance stretcher up for auction and will donate the winnings to St John Napier.

Hayley Gibson's dad Peter Gibson, who died last May was well-known within the community for the work he did.

"Who would like their very own old school ambulance Stretcher??????" the Trade Me listing starts before explaining how her "dear dad was a very well-known, well-respected ambulance officer around Hawke's Bay many years ago".

Miss Gibson said her father was a Justice of the Peace for 14 years and worked in that role in Napier District Court, known for dealing with the first appearance of the couple who stole Pania of the Reef statue in 2005.

He was also awarded a Queens Service award in 2011 and was a member of Greenmeadows Rotary for 37 years, which Miss Gibson has joined following her father's death.

But his longest standing commitment was to St John which he started volunteering for in Waipukurau at just 14.

Mr Gibson then became a full-time paramedic and worked in that role for 36 years, also becoming Superintendent of Napier St John cadets.

Miss Gibson said her dad had acquired a number of antiquated first aid kits and out-of-date St John paraphernalia.

"It all started because my dad was a bit of a hoarder.

"It's always been a bit of a laugh about what we're gong to do with it [the stretcher]."

She said she had considered listing more former St John gear, but would see how well the stretcher did first.

"I'm hoping for a couple of hundred," she said, with all money being donated to the charity.

The Trade Me listing states her hopes that "someone may also love this "collectable" as much as my dad".

She said the stretcher would have saved many locals' lives in its day.

"The thing is, this is super sturdy but not in the best condition (eg the wheels) remember it is an old stretcher and been in many emergency situations."

Heretaunga territory manager Brendon Hutchinson said Peter Gibson was a well-respected community member and ambulance officer.

"It's fantastic that the family are selling this, especially with the annual appeal coming up [next week]."

He said it was a nice gesture and good that the family wanted to give back to StJohn.

"We are a charity and donations are vital for us to keep going."

The Trade Me Listing can be viewed at http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=1058504934

It closes next Wednesday at about midday.

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