Random News, Singapore News

Cabby donates liver to stranger after reading Facebook appeal

Spotted on AsiaOne last night:

Cabby donates liver to stranger after reading Facebook appeal

Liver donor, Mr Tong Ming Ming, 34:

I’m a taxi driver. I used to be a police officer for 10 years. I decided to drive a taxi because I needed the free time. I need to juggle between earning a decent income and also to do my volunteer work.

I was doing my reservist, and I saw this post on Facebook. Somebody needed an urgent liver transplant, and I don’t even know that somebody. Later, I found out it was a friend’s friend’s friend. Quite complicated. But somehow, I felt a prompting in my heart that I needed to respond to this call for donation, this appeal for donation.

I think it’s not easy for the family, especially when it’s declared that he has only 7 days left (to live). So there was this prompting, this heavy burden on me that I needed to respond, even though it is a stranger.

When I went for the briefing thing by the surgeons, they told me the risk that I had to take out 70 per cent of my liver, (and) my gall bladder will be removed. That means I cannot store bile juice. Bile is needed to digest fats, so post-op, I will somehow put on weight, because the gall bladder is removed. And then, there’s a 1 per cent mortality rate. That means one person out a hundred will die on the operating table.

There are also side effects with medication. Some people will become bald – botak, and then, some people will also have diabetes and high blood pressure. There wasn’t any fear, because 1 per cent is not very high. To me, I needed to do what was more important, to save a life, and not be so concerned about the side effects and the mortality rate.

The operation itself was on Friday. Mine was about 9 hours. They had to open me up, take out my liver and then, while I’m being stitched back, operate on Mr Toh (the liver recipient), so it was side-by-side. The whole operation lasted about 20 hours.

After that, post-op, I became good friends with Mr Toh. I was invited to his home a few times, and then we became quite close. I think naturally, because a part of me is in him. He started sharing about his family, and coincidentally, before the operation, I found out – my mum found out – that my mum and his dad – they used to stay in the same kampung. So it’s a very small worldAnd for Mr Toh, it was very urgent. He needed a transplant in 7 days, if not, he will be gone.

I came from a very broken family. My dad, because of his own problems, we had to sell 2 flats to help him settle his problems. I don’t want other people to go through what I went through. I know I cannot help a lot of people, I cannot help the entire world, but if I can just help one, make a difference in one, to me, that’s enough.

A lot of people think I had a good job in police force, why did I leave to become a social worker, to become a volunteer? I think the priorities are different in my life. It’s not about getting cash and cars and everything. I think it’s beyond that. There’s a purpose in all our lives.

Read the Full Story at: AsiaOne Singapore

I read in the Straits Times that the Ministry of Health has confirmed this was the first altruistic liver donation by an unrelated living donor. Moving forward, I’m really touched by this story and awed by Tong Ming Ming selflessness to help Mr Toh especially considering the fact that they are just complete strangers.

Would anyone else have done that?
Kudos to Tong Ming Ming! He deserves the respect!(:


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Author: mitsueki

Hello! I'm mitsueki aka Daphne and I blog at mitsueki.sg! Follow me on IG for more updates too!

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