Docklands bomb survivor recognized for helping others during the Covid pandemic

Docklands bomb survivor Jonathan Ganesh has been recognized for his outstanding service during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr Ganesh said he was very touched to receive the Pandemic Response Medal in recognition of his efforts during the pandemic.

While the UK was dealing with Covid-19 from 2020, Mr Ganesh became an NHS Correspondent and drove a support ambulance.

She also co-ordinated the Docklands Victims Association (DVA) pandemic response team, delivering essential items such as masks, hand sanitiser gloves and equipment to NHS facilities across London.

Mr Ganesh has been collecting patients from hospitals and delivering food, medicine and other essentials to those forced to self-isolate at home.

He drove an ambulance with his friend and fellow DVA founder Wayne Gruba, who later contracted Covid-19 and died in October 2021.

Mr Ganesh was seriously injured as a result of the IRA bomb blast in London's docks in February 1996, which killed two people and injured 42 others.

He said he accepted the award on behalf of everyone in the DVA pandemic team, and especially Mr Gruba.

“I feel very moved today to receive this award. However, I accept the award on behalf of the entire DVA Covid-19 pandemic team, especially my dear friend Wayne Gruba,” he said.

“Wayne died after contracting Covid while working on the front line. Wayne and all those who have died on the front lines helping others are truly the best of humanity.”

Mr. Ganesh received congratulations from many others affected by terrorism.

Ihsan Bashir, whose brother Inam was killed in the Canary Wharf bomb, said: “As a former cancer patient I had to isolate myself.

“The support I received from Jonathan was amazing. I am so happy that he is finally being recognized for his work during Covid.”

Susanne Dodd, whose father Inspector Stephen Dodd of the Metropolitan Police was killed in the 1983 IRA bombing at Harrods, said: “I am so pleased that Jonathan has been recognized for his courageous actions in the pandemic.

“He really deserves this medal.”

Meanwhile, Joe Holbeach, who was seriously injured in the IRA bombing of Enniskillen's Remembrance Day service in 1987, said he would never forget Mr Ganesh's kindness to him.

“They sent me masks, hand sanitizers and gloves,” he said.

“I will never forget the kindness of Mr. Ganesh and DVA. Mr. Ganesh kept in touch with me during my Covid isolation so I didn't feel alone.”