York & North Yorkshire

Liver donor saves York grandson's life

A 59-year-old man has donated part of his liver to save the life of his seriously ill grandson from York.

Fourteen-month-old Owen Targett was suffering from a potentially fatal disease until he received part of his grandfather John's liver.

Six weeks after the transplant at Leeds General Infirmary tests show Owen, from Naburn, has perfect liver function.

John Targett, of Ashford, Kent, said: "It's absolutely brilliant. I would have no hesitation in doing it again."

He stepped in to help when three donated livers proved unsuitable at the last moment and he was found to be a perfect match.

One fifth of his liver was removed and transplanted to Owen in a double operation in Leeds in November.

'My destiny'

"I did a million tests which I sailed through," said Mr Targett.

"As time went by I really felt it my destiny and I was only too pleased to be able to help Owen."

The youngster, who had suffered from the rare life-threatening disease biliary atresia since birth, is now able to do things he could not do before, such as climbing up stairs.

"You wouldn't recognise this baby from a month or two ago," said Mr Targett.

"He has really put on weight and feels heavy when I pick him up.

"He used to have little stick-like arms and legs and now he's walking.

"He'll soon be running and trying to talk as well."

Owen's mother Fleur Targett said: "Owen gets to get to know his grandad and I can't thank him enough."

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