POLICE are stepping up the search for the attacker of a retired engineer from Manchester.
An image has been released of the man who left the grandfather with a broken neck, a fractured nose and numerous cuts and bruises.
Graham Rowland, 72, received these life-changing injuries after being hit over the head with something heavy.
He was on the way to meet his friend near Lightoaks Park and was, to his surprise, attacked from behind.
The cowardly mugger then left him for dead on Claremont Road in Irlams o’ th’ Height, Salford.
He was found bleeding heavily and barely conscious.
The mugger stole his victim’s gold necklace and then, according to witnesses, was seen running down nearby Acresfield Road.
Detective Constable Susan West said: “This is obviously a frightening attack on an elderly man, who was innocently walking near to the park on a warm spring evening.
“He has suffered extensive injuries and we need to find the person responsible for this.
“We would urge the man pictured, and anybody who recognises him, to come forward and contact police immediately.”
She added: “Although the image isn’t very clear, the top the man is pictured wearing is quite distinctive and I believe someone might recognise it.
“Any information, no matter how small, could help us piece together exactly what happened to this poor man.”
Graham Rowland’s daughter, Natalie, described how the mugging had left her father’s life “in limbo.”
She also said: “He has been told he must wear a neck brace for 16 weeks and is on painkillers. As he fell, as well as breaking his neck, he suffered damage to his spinal cord.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 0161 856 5360, quoting incident number 2553 of May 7.
Information can also be passed on via Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111
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