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I have so many questions, but most of all I want to know how this has been allowed to happen; NHS BLUNDER LEADS TO DAD'S HEART BEING FOUND IN HOSPITAL FRIDGE 20 YEARS AFTER HIS DEATH.

Byline: IAN JOHNSON ian.johnson01@trinitymirror.com @Ian_JohnsonGaz

ALMOST 20 years after losing her 25-year-old partner, a heartbroken mum is facing the ordeal of having to bury his heart following an NHS blunder. Jeffrey Blowers was a new dad when he died of a heart attack in 1998.

Now the mother of his only child is asking how the organ turned up in a hospital fridge almost 40 miles away from where Jeffrey died.

Sarah Kipling is now fighting for answers, adding: "I'm going to sue them".

The Normanby woman lost "bubbly" Jeffrey just 14 months after giving birth to their only daughter, Shelby.

"We have been told we can have the heart back to have another funeral, but it means my daughter now has to go through all of this - something she would never have expected to happen," said emotional Sarah.

"She has no memory of her dad, and to make her go through all of this now is just appalling."

She has no her dad, her go this now Sarah " It's understood that 13 Teesside families have been affected by organs being kept at South Tyneside District Hospital.

Organs dating back to 1991 were found at the Tyneside hospital during a 2015 audit.

Cleveland Police officers were tasked with delivering the news to affected Teesside families.

But neither the force or the NHS trust has disclosed how many families were affected by the mistake.

Sarah is now demanding answers for the agony she is having to endure.

memory of and to make through all of is just appalling.

Kipling "The police liaison officer came to speak to me about four weeks ago about this, but I haven't heard anything since," said the 38-year-old.

"Nobody has even spoke to us from the trust.

"Jeffrey wouldn't have wanted this - if he wanted to donate his heart, he would have had a donor card.

"I have so many questions but most of all I want to know how this has been allowed to happen."

Described as the "life of the party", Sarah said her former partner was loved by everyone during his short life.

Perhaps the biggest puzzle she wants solving is how the heart ended up in South Tyneside when his autopsy was carried out at Middlesbrough's James Cook University Hospital before he was buried.

"I knew there was a post-mortem, but I thought that was at James Cook, so how it is all the way up there is just beyond me," she said.

"But how has nobody come across this before? "We thought when he was buried he was as we remembered him - to find this out is just horrible."

A trust spokesperson directed The Gazette's inquiry to Northumbria Police but they have yet to reply.

Announcing the findings, the force previously said it was working with Cleveland Police to contact the families of those involved.

All cases pre-date 2006, when the Human Tissue Act 2004 came into force.

Cleveland Police were informed of the mistake in 2016.

A spokesperson for Cleveland Police said: "We knew that this news would come as a shock to the families involved and so we decided that it was only right that specially trained officers visited them to give them the news in person.

"We will continue to work with Northumbria Police, the hospital, the coroner and the families to make sure that there is dignity afforded to the dead."

emotional no her been organs at South many families affected officer speak about ago abou"She has no memory of her dad, and to make her go through all of this now is just appalling." Sarah Kipling

CAPTION(S):

Jeff Blowers with daughter Shelby

Jeff with Sarah

Sarah Kipling and daughter Shelby
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Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Apr 12, 2017
Words:620
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