Thirteen weeks into Emma Lee’s pregnancy, she and her husband Andrew discovered that their daughter Hope was suffering from anencephaly, which prevented her brain and skull from developing properly.
Rather than opting to terminate the pregnancy, Emma carried baby Hope to term, and last week she was born two minutes before her twin brother, Josh, at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge. Although she died after only 74 minutes, Hope’s tiny body will help others, as she has become Britain’s youngest organ donor.
Hope’s parents made her kidneys and liver cells available for transplant, the BBC reports.
“There’s an adult lady out there who is doing very well, so a lot of good has come out of it,” said Mr Lee.
Speaking of Hope’s fatal diagnosis, Mr Lee said, “It was a very sad time, but our whole family is signed up for organ donation.”
He continued, “We had time to plan everything we wanted to do and the hospital was able to put into action the transplant of the kidneys and some liver cells were taken as well.”
Although the story is heartbreaking, it has managed to provide the family with a little bit of closure, Mrs Lee revealed to The Mirror.
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“When we found out Hope wouldn’t survive, knowing Teddy [Houlston — who lived for just 100 minutes]’s story made me confident doctors could do the same thing,” she said. “Today she is still living on inside someone else and it helps with the grief. It’s taken some of the pain away.”
Our thoughts are with the Lee family during this sad time.