Teacher Ray Coe donates kidney and saves pupil Ayla Ahmed's life

Ayla's parents called her teacher "a hero and a lifesaver"

A teacher has saved the life of his seriously ill student by donating one of his kidneys to her.

After 13-year-old Ayla Ahmed Ali suffered renal failure, she was in desperate need of a new kidney. 

The teenager also has hydrocephalus - or water on the brain - which left her with severe learning difficulties.

Ayla’s mother alerted her daughter’s special needs co-ordinator, Ray Coe, to the situation in the summer term last year, and said that Alya would not be able to attend Royal Docks Community School in Newham while she was undergoing kidney dialysis.

When Mr Coe heard the news, he asked if he could do anything to help.

“‘I said “Can I put my name down as a donor?” I knew what being a donor meant and I knew there was a possibility it could go ahead and I knew the implications. I knew exactly what I was doing,” Mr Coe told the Evening Standard.

“There is a verse in the bible that says something like: “Maybe you were born for such a time as this”. It just clicked and I knew then that it was right," he added.

“When we told Ayla, she just gave me a big squeeze and her face lit up. It brings tears to my eyes whenever I think of that.”

To check Mr Coe was a compatible donor, doctors administered a blood test which showed he was a fitting match.

The transplant, that took place at London’s Great Ormond Street children’s hospital, London, in February has been hailed a success, and the pair are now recovering from the operation.

They are both expected to return to school after the Easter break.

Alya’s father, Ahmed Ali, 47, called Mr Coe a “hero and a lifesaver”, adding: “Ray has given Alya much more than just the gift of life. He’s an amazing man, we owe him so much.”

School headteacher Wendy Bower told the newspaper: “Mr Coe has gone above and beyond the call of duty with this selfless and noble act.

“He is a very humble and modest man. The whole staff are in admiration for his kindness. He has given a new life to Alya and her whole family.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Head of Content and PR

£35000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are 'Changemakers in retail'...

Recruitment Genius: PHP Developer - Mid / Senior

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing digital agenc...

Recruitment Genius: E-commerce Partnerships Manager

£50000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a newly-created partne...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Project Co-Ordinator - FF&E

£35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior FF&E Project Co-ordinator is re...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor