Posthumous honour for Blyth man who donated his organs
A Blyth man who helped saved lives through the gift of organ donation has been posthumously honoured.
At a moving ceremony, Michael Weedy’s family received the Order of St John Award for Organ Donation, run in conjunction with NHS Blood and Transplant.
Michael’s wife Gillian, who received the award, said: “Organ donation was a no brainer for me after Michael passed away from an aneurysm last year.
“He had carried an organ donor card in his wallet for over 18 years. I was falling to pieces, but I knew for certain what his feelings were on organ donation.
“The nurses who took care of him were brilliant. I said to the nurses Michael would have wanted to help so agreed to donate anything that would be of benefit.
“Michael was able to donate his kidneys and his heart valves. There were no matches for his heart, pancreas and liver so they were donated to research.
“We have been informed that Michael’s kidneys have helped two people and his heart valves can be stored for up to ten years and donated when a suitable match is found.
“Knowing that Michael was able to help and that he is living on somewhere brings me comfort.
“Receiving the Order of St John award on his behalf was an honour. It has pride of place next to an award that my Grandmother received from the Order of St John 100 years ago in 1919.
“They are both heroes and have inspired me to sign up to the Organ Donor Register.”
Tony Shepherd, Head of County Priory Group Affairs for the Priory of England and the Islands of the Order of St John, said: “We’re delighted to be able to work with NHS Blood and Transplant to run the Organ Donor Awards for a seventh year and to meet the inspirational families attending the ceremonies.
“Organ donation can clearly save lives and it is a genuine privilege to be able to say thank you to these families, whose loved ones have already donated their organs to save other people’s lives.
“People are still dying every day because some families are not talking about donation.
“We hope the example set by the organ donors whose lives we are honouring in Tyne and Wear encourages many others to join the NHS Organ Donor Register.”