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Kent woman dies after lung transplant

13 January 10 13:10 GMT

A cystic fibrosis sufferer from Kent who had a double lung transplant just after Christmas following a four-year wait has died at the age of 20.

Jessica Wales, from Westgate-on-Sea, received the donated organs in an "11th hour" operation through the night at Harefield Hospital on 27 December.

Her fight for life had touched many people, including the Prime Minister's wife and pop singer Natalie Imbruglia.

She died on Tuesday night after her condition deteriorated.

A statement from the charity Live Life then Give Life said she had shown "great courage and determination, inspiring people across the country through her relentless campaigning and upbeat attitude".

Twitter campaign

"Jess was not only a valued Live Life then Give Life advocate but also a great friend to many and we offer her family our sincere condolences at this sad time," the statement added.

"We will continue to campaign for all those who wait for an organ transplant and, whilst not every outcome will be what we would wish, we hope that one day all those who need a transplant will get it when they are fittest and it is most likely to have a good long-term outcome."

A campaign to raise awareness of the need for organ donation coupled with Ms Wales' fight for life won the support of Sarah Brown, the Prime Minister's wife, in a Twitter campaign as well as the pop star Natalie Imbruglia, who headlined a concert for her last October.

Speaking in the days following her double lung transplant, Ms Wales' friend Sarah Milne said: "Jess's story has touched everyone who knows her."

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