A TEENAGER has returned from France with excess baggage – weighed down by the gold medals she won at the European Heart and Lung Games in France.
Helsby High School pupil Jade Carr, who has just turned 15, got her birthday celebrations started early by gaining no fewer than five first places at Vichy.
For Chester-born Jade this was a perfect way to mark National Transplant Week, and continue her success.
Jade had a heart transplant 11 years ago after being diagnosed with a life-threatening condition as a baby.
She has consistently made headlines through her all-round sporting exploits.
Her latest haul includes athletics golds for 100m (15.36 secs) and long jump (3.33m), singles and doubles wins in badminton and also individual table tennis.
Jade, who competed against 18 to 35-year-olds in track and field events, even pulled her country through to an unlikely bronze medal in the women’s 4x100m.
Running the anchor leg, the Halton & Frodsham Harrier made up 80m on some of her rivals to snatch third after receiving the baton in last place – her split time being 14.81.
Jade’s mum Lynne said: “We are so proud of Jade.
“She is an ambassador for Cheshire and the North West – not just for her sporting achievements but for raising awareness of how organ transplantation can change lives.”
Further good news for Jade, of Clifton Road, Runcorn , is her GB selection for the next summer’s World Transplant Games in Australia.
It was in 1993 at the age of four months that Jade was diagnosed with the heart condition dilated cardiomyopathy and her life hung in the balance.
By 1996 her heart function was down to just 13% and she was sent to Harefield Hospital for a possible heart transplant, which she got after six months ‘on the list’.
Dad Rob said: “We will be eternally grateful to Jade’s donor family for their brave generosity 11 years ago which gave her the greatest gift of all – the gift of life.
“Without it, she would not be here today, living life to the full.”