Son's death saved eight people
By Marc Meneaud
The memory of a much-loved Warwickshire man is helping to drive a national campaign to find more black and Asian organ donors.
Gurpreet Singh Mundy, known as Gilly, died on March 17 after a brain haemorrhage.
He was aged just 36.
But his death was not in vain after eight people underwent life-saving transplants using his organs.
Gilly, the son of former Leamington mayor Mota Singh, carried an organ donor card and, within just 12 hours, five people had received transplants.
And in the days following his death, doctors told his dad that at least three more people had been given the gift of life, including a three-year-old Asian girl with a liver condition.
Now Gilly's family are urging members of Asian communities across Coventry and Warwickshire to join the NHS Organ Donor Register and talk to their families about donating organs after their death.
They are visiting Sikh, Hindu and Muslim places of worship in Warwickshire to ask them to spread the word by distributing information about organ donation.
Gilly's widow, Debbie, aged 37, who lives in London, said: "It is amazing what a huge difference this is making already.
"A lot of Asian people have written to me to ask for a donor card. It is expanding so quickly."
Retired postman Mr Singh, aged 68, of St Brides Close, Sydenham, Leamington, and daughter-in-law, Coventry City Council worker Sangita Mundy, who is married to Gilly's brother Jas, said they hoped others would follow Gilly's selfless act.
Widower Mr Singh, a Warwickshire county councillor, said of his son: "He was a wonderful man who helped so many other people.
"It was his wish to donate his organs and it is really something that we want to promote. I have never carried a card but I do now, and I am advising others to do the same."
National charity UK Transplant has highlighted the shortage of organ donors from black and Asian communities with a new campaign to close the donor gap.
It says less than two per cent of organ donors in Britain are from Asian or black backgrounds.
Sangita said: "We want to do this in memory of Gilly. It is extremely important.
"There are stigmas attached to organ donation and prejudices from people within the Asian community that we need to change to save people's lives."
Gilly was born in Leamington and attended Clapham Terrace, Sydenham Middle and Campion schools before studying for a degree in race relations at Edge Hill University in Lancashire.
He was a senior case worker for Inquest, a watchdog on deaths in custody. He was heavily involved with the Stephen Lawrence case and helped support Stephen's family.
A spokesman for UK Transplant said transplants were much more successful when the donor and recipient shared the same ethnic background.