A grandfather has just discovered he has been living with a broken neck for 59 years. John Richards, 74, did not know he had fractured vertebrae when he fell from a tree while stealing apples as a 16-year-old in 1948.
He was treated at the time for a broken wrist but doctors missed the other life-threatening break.
John, who felt no specific pain in his neck, got on with an active life working on a farm, and playing football and cricket. He even boxed for 15 years at a gym with no idea that one “wrong” blow could kill him.
The break was only spotted when John went for a routine check-up with his GP last month.
John, of Yatton, Somerset, was rushed to hospital, where surgeons put an inch-long bolt in his neck to finally repair the fracture.