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Mark celebrates 21st birthday of his new kidney; And he's doing it with charity bike ride.

Byline: Neil Atkinson Head of News neil.atkinson@examiner.co.uk

HE'S already celebrated a 21st birthday more than two decades ago.

But now Hudderseldborn Mark Brown is planning a second 21st celebration to mark the anniversary of his lifechanging kidney transplant.

e former Salendine Nook High School and Greenhead college student is to celebrate an extra special Easter as Good Friday marks the 21st anniversary of his kidney transplant at St James' University Hospital in Leeds.

And he plans to mark the occasion by taking part in Hudderseld Town's Pedal for Pounds bike ride, a challenging 140mile ride from Hudderseld to Blackpool and back on May 1 and 2. Mark, 48, suered from the hereditary condition Alports Syndrome, which led to kidney failure at the age of 25.

After 20 months on dialysis, which was featured on the ITV programme Jimmy's, lasting for four hours a day, three days a week, Mark had a successful kidney transplant in 1994.

ere is no doubt it has transformed his life.

Mark said: "It was scary when I got the call to say a transplant was available. My condition was stable and, though now a routine operation for the specialists involved, it was still not without risk. ankfully it's now 21 years since my transplant, and it's still going strong. "I've participated in the British Transplant Games for the past couple of years in Sheeld and Bolton, winning medals in the 100m, bowls and darts, and hope to be successful at the games in Newcastle and Gateshead later this year.

"I've been fortunate to represent my country at a number of Winter World Transplant Games, winning medals in skiing, snowboarding and curling.

"I'm celebrating my 21st with a bike ride from Hudderseld to Blackpool and back to raise funds for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.

"My training programme has got me to rides of around 55 miles, so it's not too much of a jump to 70, but it's the return trip the next day that'll be a killer!" More than 10,000 people in the UK are currently waiting for a transplant, and three people die while waiting every day. But with only 29% of the UK population actually registered as organ donors, the NHS Organ Donor Register team says more work needs to be done to raise awareness of donation and to urge those on the donor register to share their wishes with their loved ones.

To add your name to the NHS Organ Donor register, call 0300 1232323, text SAVE to 62323 or visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk.

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Transplant patient Mark Brown and, inset, training |for one of his charity bike rides

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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Apr 3, 2015
Words:444
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