Her death gave life to 6 people

PHOTO: Her death gave life to 6 people

In death, she left behind gifts of life to five people and the gift of sight to another. And for those who have benefited, the legacy will last a lifetime.

The family of Ms Carmen Ho (right) now hopes that more people will come forward to become organ donors.

The 31-year-old restaurant manager died in hospital earlier this month, nine days after a car accident in Hong Kong, South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported. Her husband, only known as Mr Wong, is still recovering from an arm injury suffered in the crash.

"I was still holding her body, crying, when the nurse asked me whether I wanted to donate her organs," Ms Ho's mother told the Hong Kong newspaper.

"It was a really tough decision."

It took the family about 30 minutes to arrive at the decision. Ms Ho had not signed a organ donation card, but her family still went ahead with the donation.

The six people whose lives have been transformed are a 43-year-old woman, Ms Sum Yee, who received Ms Ho's heart; a six-year-old boy and a 60-year-old woman who shared her liver; a man and a woman, both 24, who each got a kidney; and a person who received her corneas, Hong Kong Standard reported.

Her family said they decided to go ahead with the donation because "she really liked to help others".

The youngest of those she helped, six-year-old Sky Lai, had been waiting for a liver transplant since birth after a bile duct obstruction left him tired all the time, susceptible to bruising and feeling bloated.


His father said he was thankful that Sky was given a second chance.

"I brought him into the world, but I only gave him six years of life. The donor is giving him many more years."

Ms Ho's mother said she was very happy when she saw three of the patients who were recovering after the transplant.

Ms Sum Yee, who had suffered from heart disease since birth, said she "regained the feeling of living" after the transplant.

She said: "The feeling (of waiting for transplantation) was unimaginable to others. No one knows how long you need to wait for."

Mrs Chan, who received half of Ms Ho's liver, was grateful for the family's decision.

Without it, she said, she may not have lived to see the birth of her grandson in two weeks.

Dr Kenneth Chok Siu Ho, a consultant at the department of cardiothoracic surgery of Queen Mary Hospital, said it was rare for for so many organs to be donated from one patient (the average is three).

The series of surgeries took a total of 17 hours, with surgeons working from 7am to midnight. Said Ms Ho's aunt: "Many people are waiting for help. Now we feel like Carman has really turned into an angel."

This article was first published inĀ  The New Paper .