Parents thank 'angel' donor as toddler receives heart transplant
A toddler who has survived on a mechanical heart for more than a year has received a life-saving heart transplant.
Elliot Livingstone used the "Berlin Heart" device longer than any other child patient in the UK while he was waiting for a new heart.
His parents watched as every other child in his ward at London's Great Ormond Street Hospital received a transplant.
And now the two-year-old is recovering in an intensive care ward at the renowned children's hospital after a transplant operation.
His parents Candace and Adrian, from Hampshire, have published a heartfelt thank you note to the anonymous donor.
"Thank you little angel. In their darkest hour, as you prepared to take your last breath, your family selflessly thought of others," they wrote.
"While your wings were preparing for your flight to glory, they decided their own grief was not their sole focus. Instead they chose to gift your heart to a stranger.
"They had no idea what battle he faced, who he was or where he came from. Their one intention was for life to flourish as your own sands of time quickly slipped away. In that moment they showed us, in a world full of so much pain and suffering, just how amazing humanity can be.
"Thank you will never be enough. Your family has given our family hope. A chance of a future. A chance of life itself.
"We will endeavour to uphold your honour and your sacrifice. Not a day will go by without remembering your unselfish nature. For every additional day enjoyed, we will make sure each moment encapsulates the vibrancy and quality of life you have afforded us. We promise to make you proud of your decision to donate."
The family have decided to share their journey on Facebook to try and encourage people to become organ donors.
They wrote: "We are always hopeful that promoting organ donation through our own experience will help others realise how life-changing and life-enhancing this act can be."
:: To find out more or to sign up to the register visit: www.organdonation.nhs.uk