Mother of Sam Morrison remembers ‘inspirational’ son whose bravery saved the lives of four others
- Credit: Archant
After living “an incredible life” and travelling the world while suffering from a brain tumour, Sam Morrison, of Ipswich, died at the end of February.
But that was not the end of his amazing story – he still had four huge acts of kindness to leave the world.
Mr Morrison had signed up to donate his organs after his death and his gift of life has made sure four people are still enjoying time with their families and friends.
Tamara Moreau explained her youngest son, whose heart, kidneys, liver and pancreas were all given to severely ill people, had suffered with the tumour from a young age.
Last month she picked up the The Order of St John award for organ donation on behalf of her son at a special ceremony honouring those who give the gift of life to others after their own had ended.
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“He had a brain tumour most of his life which wasn’t cancerous but as he got older he had a high percentage chance of having a haemorrhage and that’s what happened,” Ms Moreau said.
“At age nine, after being quite ill for some time, he spent nearly 18 months in and out of Great Ormond Street Hospital.
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“He had a lot of major neurosurgery. His life was not an easy one; he suffered a lot physically.”
Despite this Mr Morrison managed to travel round the world “two or three times”, lived independently and held down a job while taking accountancy exams.
“He was very inspirational in the sense he struggled so much on a day to day basis but he never gave up,” his proud mum said. “That’s the thing everybody has said about him.”
Talking about her son’s decision to donate his organs Ms Moreau said: “He spoke to me about that.
“In his 20s I think he became very aware he had a poor prognosis which caused him a lot of anxiety.
“He wanted to do the best he could. I was very supportive of him, it was his wishes.
“I thought it was such a good thing to do. I’m immensely proud.”
Mr Morrisons liver went to a married man in his 40s who had been waiting for a month for a suitable donor. One kidney went to a man in his 30s who had been waiting a year.
The other kidney, as well as his pancreas, were donated to a married woman in her 50s with a son. She had been on the waiting list for the latter organ for more than five years.
And his heart was transplanted into a married 60-year-old man with four children – the first time a transplant in Europe had used a non-beating heart.
“My understanding is that all four people are doing well,” Ms Moreau added.
“I also had on letter from a gentleman who received both a pancreas and a kidney. I felt immensely proud.”
She also said signing up to the donor register was “incredibly worthwhile because obviously it saves lives”.
“None of us know when we are going to need something like that,” she said, adding the people involved in the NHS Blood and Transplant service go to a lot of trouble to ensure donors’ families have the right follow-up support.