Chef thanks his partner for the priceless gift of health

Kevin Beach with his partner Karen Gomme and her daughter Laura

Kevin Beach with his partner Karen Gomme and her daughter Laura

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Health reporter, also covering Kidlington. Call me on 01865 425271

EVERY time chef Kevin Beach looks at his ‘beautiful, selfless’ partner he sees the person who saved his life.

That’s because 50-year-old accountant Karen Gomme give him her kidney to help him beat a debilitating renal failure.

And the Bicester man has more than her to thank. Karen’s solicitor daughter Laura, 25 also underwent tests to see if she could be a donor.

Mr Beach, 44, has now nominated the Churchill Hospital’s renal and transplant team for our Hospital Heroes awards.

Today is the last chance for readers to nominate members of Oxfordshire’s health services for an award as nominations close today.

He said: “My life has been transformed thanks to my beautiful, selfless partner Karen and the knowledge and expertise of the staff at both the renal and transplant units.

“Nothing I do for Karen would ever be able to repay her for what she did. It has given me a new lease of life.”

He said of his partner, of Brackley, near Banbury: “She did it for us as well because without me being healthy we couldn’t enjoy the life we had grown to enjoy together.”

After struggling to keep down food and drink, he was sent directly by his GP after a blood test to the hospital for 10 days of tests, in July 2012.

A biopsy spotted scarring on the organ and he was diagnosed with kidney disease and put on tablets, which at one point numbered 32 a day.

He said: “When I was told it was just a total shock and then I had to try and come to terms with it.

“You get unbelievably tired, you have a very restricted diet because all the functions the kidney performs are no longer there.”

He said of his new chicken and pasta-based diet: “It was a bit boring after a while, I am a chef by trade so it wasn’t the easiest of times.”

His partner and her daughter immediately offered to be donors, he said, even though he did not know if they would be a match.

When he reached the point where he needed a transplant, the couple went under the knife on September 16, 2013.

The Acorn Close resident said: “It was like someone had almost given me a new battery. I felt recharged.”

Mrs Gomme said: “Why wouldn’t you do that for someone? Especially for someone that means a lot to you.

“People tend to think it is like a big thing but when you go through it you don’t think like that.”

Renal, transplant and urology services Jenny Hayes said: “It is always touching to hear patients’ personal stories and rewarding to know that we have made a real difference – not only to their lives, but those of their families and loved ones too.”

Nominate your Hospital Heroes online at oxfordmail.co.uk/news/hospitalheroes

  • Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone's contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

Send your Letter to the Editor: What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter for publication here

11:20am Monday 28th July 2014

What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter through the blue headline above.


Our top stories

UPDATE: Oxford City properties hit by power cut 'back on by 11.30pm' say SSE

Oxford Mail: light bulb with power lines

8:44pm Monday 27th April 2015

PROPERTIES affected by power cuts in Oxfordshire today are being brought back online in phases.

Murder accused is kept in custody after stabbing victim found in car

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

A 34-YEAR-OLD will appear in court tomorrow accused of murdering the man found fatally wounded in a car in Barton.

Charity dance competition is strictly sensational

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

ALL the glitz and glamour of the ballroom was brought to Oxford’s New Theatre on Saturday as couples danced off in the Strictly Oxford competition.

Mum fights to have vital drug made available through NHS

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

A MUM whose husband and young son are fighting the same rare life-threatening disease is campaigning to gain access to vital medication on the NHS.

Footballers’ tribute to tragic Kyle

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Monday 27th April 2015

FRIENDS and family of tragic Kyle Byfield came together for a memorial football tournament in Banbury on Sunday.

Pensioner will fly village’s flag again 70 years on from VE Day

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Monday 27th April 2015

YOUNG Roy Hanson was given the task of flying the Union Jack on his village church tower on VE Day in 1945.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree