Oliver Jack Bennett, 9, with security guard Muhammed Hamza during his recent visit to Dubai. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: A visiting British boy’s heartwarming gesture in seeking out a security guard on Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah to specially thank him for saving his life on an earlier trip has won him high praise.

In what is a true celebration of the human spirit, the nine-year-old boy Oliver Jack Bennett, who was on a holiday to Dubai with his mum for the second time in seven months last week, had one ‘must-do’ on his agenda: Meet ‘Muhammed’, the security guard of the building where he had been staying during his first trip in November.

As reported by Gulf News earlier, Oliver had suffered a critical tonsillar hemorrhage caused by bacterial tonsillitis during his two-week holiday at the time. His mum Jayne let on last week that it was Muhammed’s presence of mind that prompted him to call the ambulance, which in turn rushed Oliver to the Emergency of the Al Barsha-based Saudi German Hospital, where timely diagnosis and treatment enabled him to turn the corner.

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However, finding Muhammed was not easy. “At Oliver’s behest, we went to look for him at the Palm building where we had rented out an apartment during our last visit. But he was no longer there,” said Jayne.

When Oliver’s enquiries about Muhammed with the present guard drew a blank, he was highly disappointed. But unwilling to give up, he kept talking to the guard on duty and narrated the story of how Muhammed had saved his life.

“That seemed to have rung a bell and the current guard said he had heard about the incident,” said Jayne.

Young Oliver says he wanted to find Muhammed Hamza to thank him as he was kind to him when he was poorly. Image Credit: Supplied

As it turns out, the current guard, who also worked with the same company (Transguard) as Muhammed, managed to get in touch with him. And when Oliver arranged to meet with Muhammed who was now posted at another building in the area, it was like a dream come true.

“Muhammed was so kind to me when I was poorly that I had to say thank you to him,” said Oliver, mature beyond his years.

Muhammed, who was deeply touched, said, “I am so happy and excited to meet Oliver. It was so kind of him to come and see me.”

The 24-year-old Pakistani, who has been working in Dubai since 2018, said he, as per his company guidelines, had only responded to his call of duty when Oliver took ill.

“Oliver’s mother came running to the building reception for help. I noticed Oliver vomiting and he was in a bad shape, so I called the ambulance which arrived at the building immediately,” he recalled.

Oliver, who agreed to meet with Muhammed again before he left for Wales, returned with a small gift this time. “He gave me a box of dates. He also presented me with a friendship band,” said Muhammed.

It was a mission accomplished for Oliver, who is also ever grateful to the Dubai doctors and nurses who treated him.

“We just love Dubai and feel very grateful. I wanted him to have fresh memories here to make up for the last time when he fell ill. He wanted to go on a quad bike in the desert which we didn’t manage last time. He was able to do that now, just as he could meet Muhammed to thank him,” said Jayne.

What exactly happened in November 2023?

Oliver Jack Bennett, 9, was on a Dubai holiday from Wales, when he was rushed to the Emergency of the Saudi German Hospital in Al Barsha with what initially seemed like the beginnings of viral throat infection. But soon, he was throwing up clots of blood.

Admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit, he was subjected to a series of tests. He was also administered some medications, following which the vomiting and the blood discharge stopped. However, his hemoglobin fell from 12 to 8gm in one night.

Oliver with Dr Ahmed Yassin Bahgat who treated him in Dubai. Image Credit: Supplied

He was diagnosed with having a rare case of tonsillar hemorrhage caused by bacterial tonsillitis, his case being the 56th known case in the world, according to Dr Ahmed Yassin Bahgat, Consultant Otolaryngology, at the hospital.

The bleeding vessel was duly cauterised under endoscopic control. Oliver also received blood transfusion to make up for the loss of blood.

“The sudden drop in hemoglobin could have proved fatal had Oliver not reached the hospital in time. The bleeding was significant enough to trickle down and fill the stomach, which triggered the vomiting in the patient,” Dr Bahgat had told Gulf News.