PA journalist wins first Woman of Substance award

A Press Association features writer who was left virtually blind after a car crash and lost her newborn son just over a year later won the first Woman of Substance award last week.

Lisa Salmon, 42, of Hosforth, Leeds, was presented with the prize by Barbara Taylor Bradford, author of the novel A Woman of Substance, which marks its 30th anniversary this year.

Taylor Bradford said: “Lisa’s story is amazing. She has had to deal with not one but a series of tragedies which has caused her great physical and emotional pain, had to find the strength to carry on and has overcome great adversity to reinvent herself and live her life to the full.”

In 2001, Lisa was driving to cover a story when she was involved in a head-on collision with a lorry.

She suffered horrific multiple injuries and lost the only eye she could see with properly, rendering her blind.

Just over a year after the crash, Lisa lost her son, Conor, who suffocated when she was left unattended in hospital and fell asleep while breastfeeding him. An inquest ruled that the hospital had failed in its care.

She went on to have two sons who are now aged five and three.

Salmon was surprised to win: “I don’t feel like I’m that special. I’ve just got on with life. I do feel sometimes that I’m the luckiest unluckiest person alive.”

In her spare time, Lisa campaigns for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance service that saved her life eight years ago.

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