TWO months ago, a vicious mugging left Richard Lister fighting for his life.
But after weeks of intensive treatment and a flood of support from loved ones, the 18-year-old from Skircoat in Halifax is finally home with his family.
Richard suffered severe head injuries in the robbery in Skircoat Green Road in August and did not wake until 10 days after the attack.
Now he is determined to get back to full health. “I’ve had so much support, it’s been amazing,” he said.
“Having my friends visit every afternoon and evening, that’s what made my day when I was in hospital.
“It might take me a while to get back to normal but I want to eventually go back to work.”
Richard has been allowed home for weekends since last month but was officially discharged on Friday. Since he has been home, he has been approached by strangers pleased to see him recovering and wanting to shake his hand.
“When I put I was coming home as my status on Facebook, I got about 110 people liking it,” he said.
He has been overwhelmed by the support, and was especially thrilled to hear Brighouse singer Roger Davies – whose music his whole family enjoys – had dedicated a song to him on a radio show.
His family and best friend Ben Andrewan have been by his bedside throughout. Ben – a friend since three – said: “When I heard about what had happened I just started crying.
“I wanted to support him because I knew he would do the same for me.”
Richard’s mum Debbie Critchell said: “He’s got such a positive attitude, I’m really proud of him. He’s been really brave.”
The coming months will mean intensive rehab for Richard and he has been told, because of his head injury, he will not be able to drink or ride his scooter for a year.
He has also had to put his career plans on hold. Having just finished his A-levels, he had been planning on applying for jobs in web design and IT.
In the meantime, he hopes he will eventually be able to do some shifts at The Watermill pub in Salterhebble, where he was working before the mugging.
Staff and customers held a collection to buy Richard a new phone to replace the one taken in the robbery and they have raised £800.
He also wants to visit a family who helped him after the attack.
“I want to say thank you to everyone.”
l Four men and a woman have been charged with robbery.