Organ and Tissue Authority

Honouring Coen Ashton's Life

Article Date: 

Thursday, October 19, 2017

On behalf of the Ashton family, we are deeply saddened to share that high profile advocate for organ donation, Coen Ashton has passed away. Coen fought valiantly following complications due to kidney failure.

In a statement by Coen’s family, parents Dawn and Mark and brother Kai said, “Coen lived life the way that everyone should live life, never wasting a day.  He loved sharing his zest for life and changed many people’s lives along the way.  He enjoyed having everyone along to follow his life adventure.  We will dearly miss him and the adventures he sent us on.  There are no regrets, Coen never wasted a day." 

Born with Cystic Fibrosis, Coen lived his life with extraordinary courage and tenacity. With profound generosity, Coen and his family shared his story to inspire Australians to discuss organ and tissue donation and to register their decisions.

At the age of just 13, Coen rode a jet ski a distance of 2,000 kilometres down the Murray River to encourage communities along the route to join the Australian Organ Donor Register. A feat Coen repeated following his double lung transplant at age 15.

He took great pride in receiving the 2011 national Pride of Australia Child of Courage and People’s Choice Award, which he saw as another opportunity to promote organ donation.

Coen directly touched the lives of thousands of school students across Australia. His speaking tours, proudly supported by the Organ and Tissue Authority, engaged young people to think about the life-saving gift of organ donation that we all have the potential to give.

Coen is remembered for his generosity, for his life mantra of ‘My Donor, My Hero’. Every day he endeavoured to honour his donor and their family by encouraging Australians to think about organ donation.

His appearances on Channel Seven’s ‘Sunrise’, Channel 10’s ‘The Project’ and many more media outlets brought Coen’s story and inspiration into lounge rooms nationwide.

We are deeply saddened at the passing of Coen Ashton and convey our condolences to Dawn, Mark and Kai and extended family and friends at this time.

The staff of the Organ and Tissue Authority and DonateLife honour Coen’s life and his contribution to promoting awareness and family discussion about organ donation.

The Ashton family ask for privacy at this time.