Family despair as man crushed by a horse in a freak car accident

A man was only recognisible by his nose after a horse was catapulted onto his car in a freak road accident.

Ian Tilston’s vehicle was crushed by the animal which had escaped from a field and charged onto an exit slip road on the M56 in Cheshire.

The 34-year-old man was rushed to hospital, where he has had life-saving brain surgery, an operation to reconstruct his face and a number of other procedures.

Ian had been driving from his home in Hawarden, north Wales, to Nantwich, Cheshire, when the accident happened on January 10, 2022.

More than a year on, his brother Adam has shared his family’s continuing grief.

He told Liverpool Echo: “He was put in an induced coma for a few weeks and when he woke up they moved him to The Walton Centre. He had a number of surgeries and they even rebuilt his face. His entire face was crushed in the crash and he had to have a piece of his skull removed for surgery. He looked an absolute mess after the accident and we only knew it was him through his nose.

“He’s been at the Walton Centre for a year now. He’s had life-changing injuries as a result of this. He’s lost his vision and can’t walk so he needs 24-hour care.

“They’re looking to discharge him but we need somewhere for him to go. We’re trying to transform our mum’s house now. We want him home to be able to enjoy some quality of life. We just want to get something in place for him.

“Police at the time said it was a freak accident and the fences were in fine condition but horses had since escaped.”

Adam explained that Salford Royal told him the bleed on his younger brother’s brain was the worst they had seen. However, Ian can now speak and is also able to partially move his right arm, something that seemed a million miles away 12 months ago.

However, despite his overwhelming progress, Ian is still cognitively challenged as a result of the damage done to his brain and has days where he thinks it’s 2010.

Adam, a dad of one, said: “I was in work and around 9.30am my grandad rang me, it was the first time in my life I’d heard him cry. I thought the worst and thought he had died. I went to see my grandparents and we waited for news. Since then our entire lives have changed. At the start, we were preparing our lives for the worst.

“We could only recognise him through his nose. The turning point was when he was in ICU and he put his thumbs up to us.”

Now the family are raising money to try and pay for the work to be done at Adam and Ian’s mum’s home in order for Ian to be discharged from The Walton Centre. To read more or donate, click here.

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