When Lynda Beck knew her partner Hans was dying she decided to save the lives of two other people.

Lynda had been told by doctors that her fiancé was brain dead following a major heart attack last year.

And while Hans Mehlis, 70, had reached the end of his life, Lynda knew he could save the life of others by becoming an organ donor.

The Berry Brow mother-of-three released Hans’s kidneys to the NHS Blood and Transplant Service after a consultation with nurses at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.

Lynda discovered via the service that Hans’s kidneys had been donated to a woman in her mid 70s and a man in his early 60s.

The two recipients had previously been condemned to regular visits to hospital for dialysis.

But through letters via the service Lynda has learned that both recipients are doing well.

Lynda, 65, said: “Hans had been on a life support machine for five days. They’d done tests but there was no response.

“Nurses from the service approached me... They were marvellous and explained it all.

“Hans’ son Paul was there and we said if there was anyone we could help we’d do it.”

Linda Beck, fiance of the late Hans Mehlis, who was honoured by NHS and St Johns ambulance for organ donations after his death. Linda Beck with the awards.
Linda Beck, fiance of the late Hans Mehlis, who was honoured by NHS and St Johns ambulance for organ donations after his death.

In England, a person must register to become an organ donor.

But as of December 1, citizens of Wales are automatically donors unless they opt out.

Lynda believes England should follow the Welsh example.

She said: “People probably should automatically be on the register and if they don’t want to be donors they should opt out...

“It’s a way of saving other people’s lives.

“You don’t know when you’re going to die and it’s something you put off doing, like your pension, because it doesn’t seem important at the time...

“It’s about raising that awareness.”

Lynda and German-born Hans were honoured with the Order of St John alongside other organ donors at a poignant ceremony held by NHS Blood and Transplant Service and St John Ambulance.

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Major Stanley Hardy, Deputy Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, presented Lynda with the award at Leeds Civic Hall, last month.

Lynda, a retired charity worker, said: “It was amazing. There was so much feeling. It was the most beautiful day.”

She added: “It’s a nice feeling to know someone is alive because of Hans.”

Sally Johnson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “These families deserve this honour and recognition to mark their loved ones’ life-saving gifts.

“We hope their bravery will inspire others to talk about their own decision with people close to them and record their intention to donate on the NHS Organ Donor Register.”

To join the NHS Organ Donor Register visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk or call 0300 123 2323.