A 93-year-old woman yelled and cried as she endured a terrifying four-and-a-half days lying on the floor of her home after breaking her leg.
Pat Mortensen had removed her panic alarm and was walking to retrieve it when she stumbled into a chair in her Whangamata home and ''blacked out''.
The fiercely independent former representative tennis player - and oldest woman golfer in Whangamata - had fallen and broken her leg.
She spent three-and-a-half months in Waikato Hospital and cannot remember the first month of that time. Doctors told her she had two hours before her kidneys would have permanently shut down.
She has had a metal rod inserted in her leg and is doing physiotherapy with hopes of returning to the golf course where she has scored two holes in one.
Her ordeal began fell on the Friday of Queen's Birthday weekend, when usually attentive and friendly neighbours were busy with visitors and had only recently returned home.
"I can't remember feeling anything, I was blacked out nearly all of the time. All I can remember is shouting and yelling and then crying," she said, now telling her story.
"I tried to move and I couldn't. I didn't know I had a broken leg.
"I tried to shuffle and I couldn't do it on my tummy so I turned on my back and blacked out. I bit my tongue nearly in half."
Mortensen recalls moments of crying and fear as she lay in and out of consciousness.
She had grazes on her face from lying on the carpet for so many days, and was without food or water and unable to reach the toilet.
"I remember the next morning - yelling, hoping someone could hear me but these curtains were drawn and I can remember through the days, calling and calling. I tried to shuffle and I just couldn't move because of my leg. For the next two days I know I called out, but I don't remember anything.
"It was frightening for me. I didn't know whether I should cry but I thought 'no, that's not going to help', but I did want to cry. The more I thought about it, I thought 'have I got a life to come back to? What's going to happen to me now?' But I've always been an independent person."
She was found by neighbour Dawn Burgess who and gone around the back of the property to check on her.
Mortensen said she felt lucky to have such caring neighbours who usually always check the curtains are drawn but they were busy with holiday visitors and did not notice she had not walked her usual route past their kitchen window to collect her daily newspaper.
"They do keep an eye on me but didn't notice I hadn't been past. It was just one of those things. It's important to know people are checking, especially living alone.''
She said doctors told her that due to her active life, her body had survived the ordeal so much better.
"That was my saving grace."
Mortensen lost her husband Frank to motor neuron disease a few years ago.
The couple have a daughter in Auckland and two sons, one in Australia.
Family took rostered turns at her hospital bedside and she was sent "hundreds" of well wishes from fellow sportsmen and women and friends in Whangamata.
"I would like to give all the community and all of my sports clubs that I belong to a very big thank you. I've always felt part of the community and loved being part of it but didn't realise just how many people cared."
Mortensen was a New Zealand representative tennis player who only stopped playing three years ago.
Numerous care staff now visit her daily to help and to deliver meals five days a week.
Friend Barbara Collett visits her and other elderly people who live alone in the town.
Collett said there were many isolated people whose challenges included being unable to drive or having lost a partner.
Unlike Mortensen, many were not confident to join a club and found it difficult to ask for help with transport or other needs.
Mortensen encouraged them to reach out. She said they should also never be afraid to use the medic alarm service.
"I didn't realise people were still like that, reluctant. They only have to be encouraged [to socialise] for the first couple of times, and then they're mixing with people."
St John Whangamata secretary Lynne Bryant encouraged elderly people who lived alone consider a medic alarm.
"If you push that button somebody rings you immediately, and we have a locked key system so our ambulance is dispatched with the personalised code and [officers] can let themselves in if no one can get to the door."
Falls were one of the top four reasons for phoning 111 for an ambulance, St John data showed.