Boy donates organs of brain-dead mother; his uncle was shot dead last week

The tragedy that has befallen the Nelluvelil family has left many speechless. But the generosity and graciousness shown by the family members in the midst of their grief and anguish is something which will always be spoken about.

The family, which is yet to recover from the terrible shock of the brutal murder of Malayali businessman Renjith T. Nelluvelil by gangsters in South Sudan on Saturday, was dealt another blow when Renjith’s younger sister, Sherly Sebastian, 49, who had come to the city to receive her brother’s body, died suddenly following a fall on Monday.

Sherly had a bad fall while coming down the stairs of her brother’s home at Peroorkada around 10.30 p.m. on Monday and was rushed to SUT Hospital, Pattom. At 3 a.m., she became comatose and was put on ventilator. At 1.15 p.m. on Tuesday, doctors declared her brain-dead.

But, even as the entire family remained numb with shock, Sherly’s elder son, Jithin Sebastian, stoically came forward to announce that he wished to keep his mother’s memories alive by donating her organs. There were no dissent notes from the family at all and they respected Jithin’s wish.

The announcement took the Trauma Management team at SUT hospital by surprise, who immediately took special care for maintaining the patient haemo-dynamically. The rest of the formalities were fulfilled quickly.

The hospital, a non-transplant centre, did not have the licence to do organ harvesting, but the hospital management and the Transplant Coordinator of the Government’s Deceased Donor organ Transplant Programme immediately sought and was granted special sanction by the Health Secretary and the Director of Medical Education for retrieving the organs.

“The patient had been healthy and had no systemic diseases like diabetes or hypertension. A team from the Thiruvananthapuram Government Medical College Hospital will be harvesting the kidneys while the team from Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences will be arriving late evening to retrieve the liver. Both corneas are also being harvested,” one of the doctors at the trauma team at SUT hospital said.

Sherly and her family, including her husband, Sebastian Joseph, sons Jithin and Tom, were settled at Eranjipalam, Kozhikode.

“Mummy came here to be with my uncle’s family and to lend them support while preparing for the funeral. Little did we expect to be preparing for her funeral as well. But even in our loss, we are happy that she will be instrumental in giving a new lease of life to others,” Jithin said.


  • Sherly had a fall as she was coming down the stairs

  • Her brother Ranjith T. Nelluveli had been shot dead in Sudan