Mother-of-two who died aged 38 saves three lives after donating organs
- Credit: Archant
The family of a Suffolk mother of two who died suddenly after a rare blood disease diagnosis have accepted an award from St John’s ambulance on her behalf - after her organs saved three other lives.
Hayley Adams died in May 2017 aged 38, just one month after she was told she had aplastic anaemia, a rare blood disease that attacks the body’s bone marrow.
A strong advocate of organ donation, Mrs Adams’ kidneys and liver were donated to save the lives of three people after she died, as well as her pancreas being used for medical research.
She received the Order of St John Award for Organ Donation, given to her family on her behalf on October 3 and accepted by her husband, Duane Adams.
Mr Adams said: “Hayely was passionate about organ donation. She always said to me that she wanted to donate.
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“She was a giver who put other people first. She always said “Why wouldn’t you donate?’”
In her memory, a committee of friends and family organised Hayley’s Ball, an evening of fundraising at Assington Hall on September 29.
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Hoping to raise around £10,000, they exceeded all expectations and will give £17,200 to the Aplastic Anaemia Trust and the Weybourne Unit at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital today.
Hayley’s sister Claire Cattermole said: “The ball was brilliant, it was absolutely fantastic to see so many people there for Hayley.
“Between the donations, ticket sales and local business support we had covered the cost of the ball, so everything else will go straight to the charities.”
Over 250 people took part in the evening of raffles, silent auctions and the purchase of ‘mystery boxes’ containing donated presents from businesses and attendees.
She added: “I think Hayley would have been blown away by the number of people there on the night like we were.”
Mr Adams, Mrs Cattermole and Mrs Adams’ parents were in London at a private event just four days later to accept the award, given by the Order of St John and NHS Blood and Transplant.
He added: “It does give me an enormous sense of pride that she saved lives through organ donation. That’s how I see it – it continued her legacy as a giver.”
To join the NHS Organ Donor Register, visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk.