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Mitchell's story

His gift of organ donation was the ultimate way of helping people

Mitchell's wish was to be a paramedic. When his life was cut tragically short late last year, he lost the opportunity to have his dream job, but he still saved the lives of four people.

His gift of organ donation was the ultimate way of helping people.

He was a normal teenager that loved to do normal things. He was kind and gentle. He accepted everyone and never had a bad word to say about anyone.

All he cared about was family, friends and lending people a hand. He loved to ride his motorbike with his best mate Luke and he was an asset to his football club.

Mitchell grew up quickly when his Dad died, he was only 13. We were a close family and he became the 'man' of the household, even though he was the youngest.

His sisters loved him dearly and so did his little nephews, three and a half year old Harrison and four week old Oliver. We all idolised him. He was more than a 'little' brother, he was a best mate.

Mitchell died when his ute ran off the road during a storm and hit a tree. He was only 18 years old. He hardly had a mark on him when my daughters and I saw him in the hospital.

Nothing prepares you for the news that there is no hope. Then you are asked about organ donation and your brain has to comprehend the question.

The decision that day to donate Mitchell's organs was extremely hard because we were in shock and our minds struggled to process the information. But we all knew in our hearts what Mitchell would have wanted.

Something can happen in a split second. You never ever think this nightmare could happen to you. You need to talk about it with your family, let them know what you want to do, regardless of your age.

Mitchell's heart, lungs, liver, left and right kidney and pancreas were all donated. No parent should ever have to lose a child but our family's decision gives me comfort every day knowing that Mitchell's organs saved the lives of others, I think about them every day and hope they are okay.

I am humbled to know other people have been touched by the story of Mitchell's generosity and they have now discussed organ donation and registered to be donors.

Nicky Burton