Jemima Layzell organ donation

Photo via Hamza Butt/ (CC-BY)

13-year-old sets organ donation record by saving 8 lives

Jemima Layzell's organs went on to help eight different recipients, including five children.


Ana Valens


Posted on Sep 8, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 6:05 pm CDT

13-year-old Jemima Layzell passed away suddenly from a brain aneurysm in 2012. But before her death, Jemima agreed to become an organ donor. And now the U.K.’s NHS Blood and Transplant reports that her organs are breaking records for the most people helped from one donor.

After a family friend died in a car crash in 2012, the Layzell family discussed organ donation together, leading Jemima to sign up as a donor. Several weeks later, Jemima passed away from a brain aneurysm while helping prepare for her mother’s 38th birthday party. However, her organs were still intact after her death, giving her parents the option to donate Jemima’s essential body parts to other in need.

Her heart, small bowel, pancreas, kidneys, liver, and lungs later went on to help eight different people, including five children. By the time Jemima’s organ donations were complete, she had set a record in the United Kingdom for donating the most organs in the country.

“We feel it’s very important for families to talk about organ donation,” mother Sophy Layzell said to the Guardian. “Every parent’s instinct is to say no, as we are programmed to protect our child. It’s only with prior knowledge of Jemima’s agreement that we were able to say yes.”

Her family now runs the Jemima Layzell Trust, a charity dedicated to helping brain aneurysm survivors and encouraging organ donation. A collection of diaries from Jemima have also been put together and turned into a book, called The Draft. The collection’s sales will help raise funds for the trust.

H/T the Guardian

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*First Published: Sep 8, 2017, 9:52 am CDT