Elaine completes rose garden at Calderdale Royal

Elaine Young, widow of organ donor, has planted a rose bush at Calderdale Royal Hospital
Elaine Young, widow of organ donor, has planted a rose bush at Calderdale Royal Hospital

The widow of a man who donated his organs has planted a memorial rose tree at Calderdale Royal Hospital.

John Young of Skircoat Green, Halifax, was on the donors list when he died of a brain haemorrhage in October 2009, aged 57.

Now, after his organs were used to help 42 different people, including a young woman who suffered kidney failure, his wife Elaine has planted a rose tree which completed the memorial garden at Calderdale Royal.

“John would be immensely proud,” Elaine said.

“As a family we have always been very passionate about organ donation and when the doctor approached me after John died there was no decision to be made. I told them to use everything they could.

“John had made his feelings clear about organ donation and I know he would have been disappointed if we hadn’t done what he wanted.

“He was a very generous and giving person who felt strongly about donation and knowing that was a great comfort to us.

Their children, Joanne, Michael and Andrew, are now equally as passionate about organ donation and are on the register to donate.

Elaine has never met anybody who benefited from John’s organs, but says she would like to one day.

“I get reports every year on how each person who has had an organ is getting on,” she said. “I would quite like to meet some of the people and I know our son Andrew would too.

She said organ donation was an important issue that should to be discussed.

“It’s important that families and friends understand what someone wants to happen when they die,” Elaine said.

“As well as being on the register, family and friends have to give permission to the doctors for your organs to be used so it’s important they know your wishes.”

Now that the final rose tree has been planted in the garden at the hospital, Elaine is looking forward to seeing it grow.

“I like the fact I now have a quiet place to come and contemplate things,” she added.