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‘Organ donation is a no-brainer’

CHAMPION BMX rider Dane Searls tragically died in a balcony fall at Surfers Paradise, but his donated kidneys, liver, bone and heart tissue saved lives.

Mr Searls died in hospital at age 23 after the accident, in November, 2011, leaving behind devastated family and friends, including his older sister Kristen Eller.

She urged Gold Coast residents to register as organ donors during DonateLife Week, which ends Sunday.

Kristen Eller, older sister of organ donor Dane Searls, urged Gold Coasters to register as organ donors today. Picture: Jerad Williams
Kristen Eller, older sister of organ donor Dane Searls, urged Gold Coasters to register as organ donors today. Picture: Jerad Williams

"I think it's really honourable," Ms Eller said.

"(Dane) obviously couldn't take them with him. Three things he could no longer use, three people have been living their lives."

Ms Eller has not had a chance to meet the donors - but heard one "older gentleman" who benefited has since been "out riding motorbikes and continuing Dane's legacy".

BMX rider Dane Searls pictured on one of his many adventures.
BMX rider Dane Searls pictured on one of his many adventures.

"He's since said he's jumping higher and faster than he ever had on his motorbike," Ms Eller smiled.

"It is very humbling to know that my brother lives on in other people, and I know they must be so thankful for the gift that never ceases to stop giving: life."

Following a meeting with Ms Eller, Mayor Tom Tate pressed Gold Coast residents to talk to their family and friends about organ donation.

"More than 1,400 Australians are on waiting lists for a lifesaving transplant - many of these are Gold Coasters," he said.

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate with Kristen Eller, older sister of organ donor Dane Searls, met as part of DonateLife Week. Picture: Jerad Williams
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate with Kristen Eller, older sister of organ donor Dane Searls, met as part of DonateLife Week. Picture: Jerad Williams

"Registration is so important - nine out of 10 families agree to a donation proceeding when the deceased is a registered organ donor.

"It gives families peace of mind knowing their loved one's wishes are fulfilled."

Only 28 per cent of Queensland residents are registered organ donors.



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