Three years ago Judith Martin’s family were called to her hospital bedside and told to prepare their goodbyes. The 60-year-old had suffered multiple organ failure as a result of acute sepsis and was severely ill.
Yet, Judith pulled through and went on to make a miraculous full recovery. But that wasn’t enough for the Ayrshire woman.
Over the summer she won a silver medal in the Masters European Cup in Germany. “The hockey is really what kept me going during my recovery,” says mum-of-three Judith. “Winning that medal was a dream come true.”
Judith has played hockey since she was a schoolgirl, and now competes for the Scottish Masters over-55s team, which narrowly lost out to England, who scored twice in the final seven minutes to take gold.
Yet, Judith was awarded the match pennant and finished with three goals. “There was the realisation we had achieved something no other Scottish women’s hockey team had ever done in the past – reaching the final of a major tournament,” she adds.
Judith, who works for pensions and trusts firm Acma, said: “I can’t quite believe this all happened, as three years ago I was fighting for my life. In my recovery phase I was encouraged to set targets for the future and I remember sitting there with other people and they were saying things like ‘I want to be able to get the messages in by myself.’
“I had slightly different targets – I wanted to cycle from Land’s End to John O’Groats, do the Glasgow Half Marathon and do an Iron Man competition! I managed two of those, and changed the third after watching my Masters team-mates play the Home Nations tournament in Edinburgh. It was hell being on the sidelines, spectating was not for me. I wanted back on the pitch.”
Wearing her nation’s shirt clearly holds strong values for Judith.