Richard Thain’s world fell apart in 2014 when his beloved mother, Sandra Wiseman, passed away aged just 58.
Through his grief, Richard and his family have taken great comfort in the decision they made to honour Sandra’s wishes to be an organ donor – a decision which meant that the lives of four people were saved.
Sandra, who suffered from severe depression, attempted to take her own life and following two days on life support, the family made the difficult decision to switch off her ventilator.
The family gave consent for Sandra’s liver, kidney and lungs to be donated, which allowed four people to live.
Speaking about his pride, Richard said: “Although we lost mum in the most tragic circumstances, I have immense pride in her. She’s given people a better quality of life and every time I speak about mum being an organ donor I hold my head up high.
“When we received the letter saying four people has received mum’s organs, I was really teary eyed. They don’t give you much detail but I know one of the recipients was young. When you’re just starting life you shouldn’t need to face illness and the fact mum helped that person did actually make me smile.”
Sandra was posthumously honoured the Order of St John, an award which recognises the incredible gift that donors and their families make to improve the lives of others.
Richard added, “Me and my son Nathan lived with my mum. She was my best friend and I miss being able to speak to her because we talked all the time. I’m on the NHS Organ Donor Register now, and I’d encourage others to think about it, or speak about it with loved ones. I’ll never stop being proud of her.”