Wednesday, 13 March 2013

17 months on......

You may remember I lost my beloved Dad in October 2011, and how we couldn't have a funeral because he had left his body to Manchester University's Anatomy Department for medical research, see here.

Yesterday MWM, myself, my youngest brother and my youngest son attended a Service of Thanksgiving at the University for those who had donated their body for Medical and Scientific Teaching and Research in the previous year.  The service was attended by The Lord Leiutenant of Greater Manchester, The Lord Mayor of Manchester, local councillors, staff and students of the university and many relatives and friends of the donors.

We each received an Order of Service the preface read:

Each year, approximately 850 students commence studies in Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, Speech and Language Therapy, Audiology, Optometry, Anatomical Sciences or Biomedical Sciences at The University of Manchester.

An important component of their training involves the study of human anatomy.

Each year, a large number of generous and public-spirited individuals donate their bodies to The University so that it can continue to provide high quality teaching of human anatomy to its students.

This Service of Thanksgiving is dedicated to all those who donated their bodies during the past year and who have thus contributed, even after death, to the benefit of future generations.

The names of those whom we commemorate are recorded at the end of this order of service. 

The service included addresses by multidenominational faiths and University teaching staff,  readings by students, hymns and prayers for the departed, the students and for us all.  Halfway through the service,whilst the New Manchester Voices were singing an anthem, eight students lit four candles each, one in memory of each donor. There were 32 names recorded, my Dad included.

It could be another 1 - 2 years before my Dad's remains will be released for committal to a local undertaker.  The University will pay for the cremation and we will be able to attend the service and claim his ashes.

I am so proud my Dad is still contributing to the future, and that he inspired myself and MWM to do the same, we have both donated our bodies to the University when our time comes.


Carol said...

I think that is a fantastic thing to do. A guy at work here did it when he died and his funeral was a year later. How lovely that the university hold a service for them all.

Ron said...

"This Service of Thanksgiving is dedicated to all those who donated their bodies during the past year and who have thus contributed, even after death, to the benefit of future generations."

How awesome is that! And I bet the service was beautiful!

"I am so proud my Dad is still contributing to the future, and that he inspired myself and MWM to do the same, we have both donated our bodies to the University when our time come."

You have given me food for thought about doing the same thing. Because as you shared, it's a way to contribute to the future!

Thank you for sharing this post, m'dear!

((((((( You )))))))

Akelamalu said...

We were told it could be anything up to 3 years for the University to release Dad's remains Carol so we are prepared for that. I was surprised when we received the letter about the service, such a lovely thing to do I think.

The service was beautiful Ron and made even more so by the large number of students who attended and took part. I had known for years that Dad had left his body to the university, but experiencing the caring, compassionate way they dealt with the arrangements when he passed convinced MWM and I it was a good thing to do. Of course we discussed it with the boys before we actually committed ourselves. The boys are fine with the idea.

Finding Pam said...

What a touching post about your Dad. I always wondered how this worked, especially, about the remains of the body. Your Dad enabled much study and knowledge to be gained for the students.

Fantastic that you and your hubsand will do the same.

Valerie said...

Pearl, I often wondered what happened about funerals, and when. Thank you for explaining it all and for giving me food for thought.

Akelamalu said...

It was all explained to us when we contacted the university re Dad's wishes Pamand we were asked then if we wanted to be present at the committal and whether we wanted his ashes.

We did too Valerie but it was all explained. There is no guarantee that the university will take a body it depends on many factors such as whether the person has died of a communicable disease, if there has been a post mortem, one cannot donate organs as well as donating one's body and whether the university has room even, as in there have been a few bequests at the same time.

Cloudia said...

Thanks Dad!

Thanks' Ake.

Aloha, Dear

A Lady's Life said...

Oh Gosh!
I can't even imagine it.

Beach Bum said...

You know I might donate my body as well. For me funerals are an expensive scam. I know services are suppose to be for the family but when a casket costs several thousand dollars that is just stupid.

Daryl said...

a beautiful gift .. thank you

Dianne said...

our spirit lives on
so if our body can help others then it is a wonderful thing
thank you!

Akelamalu said...

You're welcome Cloudia xx

What LL the service or donating one's body?

Exactly my thoughts Beach, though there is no guarantee that the University will accept our bodies so it may be we have to organise a funeral, but I hope not.

You're welcome Daryl x

You're absolutely right Dianne xx

g-man said...

I got my eye on you Pearlie Mae...

Travis Cody said...

I'm an organ donor. I might look into this as well. I wonder if you can do both?

Akelamalu said...

That's good to know G ;)

No you can't do both Trav, well not here anyway.

Maggie May said...

No wonder you are proud of him but it takes a lot of guts to leave your body that way. I only know of one other person whose parents did that. It might be a bit hard on the relatives but it is so necessary for medical science. I don't have the same squeamishness about body organ donations. Strange!
Maggie x

Nuts in May

tony said...

A Wonderful Process .You Must Be Really Proud Of Your Dad.x

Akelamalu said...

For MWM and I leaving our whole body rather than just donating organs is the same thing Maggie. We checked that our two sons were OK with it before committing and they were fine about it. :)

I am Tony :)

Secret Agent Woman said...

Wonderful of your Dad to do, and also good of the University to have a ceremony to acknowledge the gifts of donors.

CrystalChick said...

All terrific ... that your dad wanted it done, that they had a service for those involved, and that you and MWM have decided to do it too. Yes, excellent!

Lorraine said...

How lovely to have a service for all faiths and none in such a way for you all to commemorate them and their lives. That must have been very moving to have shared in that with all the other families too. Amazing thing to have done and I must admit, it is something I wondered about myself xx

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Akelamalu said...

I too thought the thanksgiving ceremony was a wonderful idea SAW.

Thanks CrystalChick x

The multifaith service was wonderful Lorraine and so very moving.

Thankyou Sifat

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