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Sunday, June 5, 2016

The grieving mother who gave her son's heart so others could live

Sue Burton with Marc McCay CREDIT: GARY ROBERTS/ WORLDWIDEFEATURES.COM
THE TELEGRAPH | Cole Moreton

Slowly, awkwardly, she reached out to touch him. A mother still grieving for the death of a son was able to put her hand out flat against the chest of another young man and – amazingly – feel the heart of her lost boy, beating inside him.

“You’re getting me upset now,” she said, but she also smiled. The lad held her palm close and she could feel the pulse under her fingers. “For me to be able to feel that is actually my son’s heart, that he was born with, and it’s still beating … it’s just incredible.”

This deeply moving moment was captured during the recording of a new Radio 4 series called The Boy Who Gave His Heart Away, to be broadcast every day this week. It’s a real-life medical cliffhanger told in the voices of those were involved – so if you don’t want to know what happens be warned, there are spoilers to come.

We tell the true story of two teenage boys who both suddenly fell ill in the summer of 2003, a few days and a couple of hundred miles apart. They didn’t know each other, but their lives became intimately intertwined.

One was a bubbly boy of 16, suddenly struck down by a brain haemorrhage in the middle of the night. He stumbled noisily into his mother’s bedroom and she said: “What on earth’s going on?” Continue reading
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