Matthew Legemaate has always been a fighter - 36 hours after being born, Matthew underwent his first open heart surgery, and after years of heart operations and being put permanently on oxygen in 2010, he was placed on the transplant waiting list, as he was unable to undergo any further invasive surgery.
It was during October last year, that the family received that much anticipated call and Matthew underwent a double lung and heart transplant that saved his life, thanks to his donor angel.
Being in the medical field, Compass Medical Waste Services took particular interest in Matthew’s story and invited Janet and Matthew to talk to their staff. So moved by Matthew’s journey and his passion to sign up 50 000 new organ and tissue donors and to ultimately save lives, Compass decided to support Hero777 in a meaningful way.
“From the moment the Compass team heard Matthew’s story, we knew we needed to get involved with Hero777 by raising awareness about organ and tissue donation and, in turn, help Matthew to reach his goal,“ explains Taryn Murdey of Compass.
“Over and above the funds and outdoor branding donated, many Compass staff and their families have committed to becoming organ donors – a process that only takes three minutes to do, but will change someone’s life forever,’’ concludes Taryn.
With only 0.02% of the South Africa population registered as potential organ and tissue donors, the need to increase organ and tissue donation is dire. One organ donor can save up to seven lives through heart, lungs, kidneys, liver and pancreas donation, as well as potentially heal up to 50 others through tissue donations - skin, bone, corneas, ligaments and heart valves.
To celebrate Matthew’s one year post transplant anniversary, Matthew, together with a group of 130 supporters, will be cycling in the Tsongo Sun Amashova Classic on Sunday, 21 October from Hillcrest to the Durban beachfront.
Hero777 aims to try raise R50 000 through this event, so please donate to this worthwhile cause by visiting https://www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/riding-for-hero777 and filling in your name, the amount you wish to donate, a short message of encouragement and selecting your payment method.