‘Mov­ing here saved my life’

Cou­ple turned out to be one in 100,000 donor match

The Scarborough News - - FRONT PAGE - By Jade McEl­wee jade.mcel­wee@jpress.co.uk Twit­ter: @JadeMRe­porter

A move to Scar­bor­ough ‘saved the life’ of a woman who came to live here with her hus­band af­ter fall­ing in love with the town.

John and Deb­o­rah Wi­cholls trav­elled up to the town for a bank hol­i­day week­end – and lit­tle did they know the week­end trip would dra­mat­i­cally change their lives.

Af­ter their week­end get­away, John said: “We liked the place so much we just de­cided to pack up and move.”

Once they had set­tled in, John and Deb­o­rah went to

Fals­grave surgery for rou­tine health checks and found out that Deb­o­rah had kid­ney prob­lems that would need im­me­di­ate at­ten­tion.

John, 56, said: “They told Deb­o­rah her kid­neys were shot so she would need dial­y­sis or a trans­plant.”

Deb­o­rah, 53, said: “We wouldn’t have found out if we hadn’t moved.

“I never thought any­thing of it, I just thought it was age.”

Fol­low­ing the news John de­cided to be tested to see if he would be a pos­si­ble match and against the odds, he was her per­fect match.

John said: “The odds are about one in 100,000 they told me.

“The trans­plant was three years ago on Tues­day and we’re both ab­so­lutely fine.”

Deb­o­rah added that she was “over the moon” to find out that John, the first per­son to be tested, was her a match for her.

Sur­pris­ingly, a photo of the kid­ney now has a pride of place in the cou­ple’s home.

Ersin Ramiz, a friend of John’s from Lon­don, said: “We all think that mov­ing to Scar­bor­ough saved her life.”

The cou­ple also talked very highly of the doc­tors and in par­tic­u­lar Dr Scar­bor­ough.

Deb­o­rah said: “I want to say a huge thank you to Dr Scar­bor­ough. She helped me through such a rough time and bad jour­ney.

“She did such a thor­ough job go­ing through my records from be­fore I was her pa­tient here.”

Since mov­ing the cou­ple now also work at Scar­bor­ough Hospi­tal, John as a health­care as­sis­tant and Deb­o­rah in cater­ing.

John has also had his fair share of health chal­lenges as he had both hips re­placed as well as the kid­ney trans­plant surgery.

Scar­bor­ough has not only pro­vided health mir­a­cles for the cou­ple but has sig­nif­i­cantly changed their life in other as­pects.

John said: “Scar­bor­ough is a gor­geous place. We even have a dog now called Biriyani.

“In Lon­don there was no point in hav­ing a dog be­cause there was nowhere that nice to be able to walk it.

“There’s loads of gor­geous places to walk the dog here.”

A love for Scar­bor­ough has not only at­tracted John and Deb­o­rah, but Deb­o­rah’s two daugh­ters and son have also made the move up to North York­shire.

Ersin added: “They are a lovely, car­ing cou­ple. I was sad when they moved to Scar­bor­ough but happy for them at the same time.

“All of our group of friends in Lon­don miss them but we do get to visit a least a cou­ple of times a year in what we nick­name ‘Far­bor­ough’.”

Deb­o­rah and John Wi­cholls. Pic­ture by Richars Pon­ter 184010e

John and Deb­o­rah Wi­cholls. Pic­ture by Richard Pon­ter 184010d

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