Rosehearty 'Elephant Man' dies as friend blames doctors

Michael Cull passed away after years of begging doctors to amputate his leg
Michael Cull passed away after years of begging doctors to amputate his leg

The 'Elephant Man' of Rosehearty, termed so due to massive parasitic swelling in his left leg, has died amid claims that doctors did not do enough to save him.

Michael Cull (68) passed away at around 3am Thursday July 4 morning in Aberdeen Royal Infirmary following two biopsies - with his best friend Christina Brooks (65) claiming he spent his final hours "screaming in agony".

Mr Cull had spent over 10 years begging doctors to amputate his leg and Ms Brooks claims doctors promised surgery time and again only for them to "pull the plug" at the last minute.

Ms Brooks has now hit out at NHS Grampian which, she believes, never did enough to save her friend.

She said: "It's disgusting and I'm absolutely devastated. "They should have done something six or seven years ago when they said they would."

Ms Brooks was with Mr Cull when he died in ARI and said she could hear him screaming from down the hall.

Ms Brooks said: "His leg was black and blue from top to bottom.

"Every time someone moved his leg you could hear him screaming."

The friend has now vowed to take action over Mr Cull's death.

She said: "After the funeral I'm going to the police.

"They have made blunder after blunder and they shouldn't be getting away with it."

Ms Brooks paid tribute to the "dearest, sweetest, kindest person" she knew who had recently retired and was looking forward to future.

Mr Cull, a former NASA computer technician, and Ms Brooks had plans for a September holiday and taking part in astronomy talks - a passion which the two friends shared.

Ms Brooks said: "These should be the best years of his life now that he has just retired."

As she now plans the funeral of her friend Ms Brooks said: "Michael has lost his life needlessly."

"Someone needs to get to the bottom of it and find out what happened."

A spokesperson for NHS Grampian said: "NHS Grampian extends condolences to the family of Mr Cull.

"Due to patient confidentiality we cannot discuss individual cases.

"However, if Mr Cull's family or next of kin are in any way concerned about the care or treatment received, then we would urge them to contact our Feedback service and we will respond to them directly."