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New lease of life for Liam Waterworth after heart transplant with a trip to Manchester United and a welcome from Wayne Rooney
A YOUNG man who believes he has been given “a new life” after a successful heart transplant is throwing himself into a job with a charity that helps people with terminal illnesses.
Liam Waterworth, aged 25, was told last year that his heart was three times bigger than normal and warned by doctors there was little more they could do unless he had a transplant.
Fortunately a donor heart was secured and the former Hamblett School pupil was taken to the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle, a centre of excellence for transplants, in March 2013.
After undergoing an eight hour operation doctors told Liam to “go and live his life”.
And he is doing just that after landing his first ever job with St Helens based charity HoneyRose Foundation, where he is determined to help people who are affected by terminal and life limiting illnesses.
Liam, from Sutton, told the Star: “What’s the point in sitting down when someone has given you a new life? Get out there and live it.
“Before the transplant I was always blue and quite puffy. I couldn’t do anything or walk very far.
“I lived with that for 25 years. I was in hospital a lot and in 2010 had a pacemaker fitted.
“But there were just two chambers working in my heart and eventually the pacemaker couldn’t cope.”
Liam initially made contact with HoneyRose when they fulfilled his wish to travel to Old Trafford where he met past and present Manchester United football players.
He said: “I had a tour round the ground and met Wayne Rooney. It was fantastic. Now I’ve come to work for Lynn to tell my story and show people what can be done.
“This is a second chance for me and I will not let down the person who gave me this heart.”
Lynn Duffy, who is the founder of the charity, said: “He is a special young lad who always gives his best. And his family have been so supportive throughout.”
Liam’s sister Shelley added: “Liam is the bravest, strongest and most inspirational person I know and amazes me every day in his recovery and his new life.”
Enthusiastic Liam is also planning to take part in the World Transplant Games next year to “celebrate a new life”.