Yasmin Abu Ramila was in stable condition after receiving a kidney from bombing victim Jonathan Jesner.A suicide bombing that took the lives of six Jews resulted in new life for a Palestinian girl, who received a kidney from a young Scottish student killed in the Sept. 19 blast on a Tel Aviv bus.
Yasmin Abu Ramila, 7, a Palestinian from east Jerusalem, had been on a transplant waiting list and undergoing dialysis treatment for almost two years, an Israeli Health Ministry official said.
A suitable donor finally became available when Jonathan Jesner, 19, a yeshiva student from Scotland, died on Sept. 20, a day after he was critically wounded when a Palestinian suicide bomber blew up a bus in downtown Tel Aviv. Seven people died in the bombing, including Jesner, five Jewish Israelis, and the bomber.
Jesner suffered serious head injuries in the blast and later died at Tel Aviv’s Ichilov Hospital after his parents consented to his life-support machine being switched off. The family then agreed to donate the kidney.
Abu Ramila was in a stable condition following the transplant operation, completed the next evening, hospital spokeswoman Riva Shaked said.
The child’s parents expressed their gratitude to the Jesner family for ending their long wait for a donor.
“I don’t know what to say to thank the family of the man killed in the attack,” said Abu Ramila’s mother, Rina, according to Israel’s Maariv newspaper. “I grieve for their loss and thank them for their donation, which saved the life of my daughter.”
Jesner came to Israel in 2001 to study at a Jewish seminary for a year. He decided to extend his stay and put off medical school for an additional year in Israel, relatives said.
After medical school, Jesner hoped to return to Israel from his hometown of Glasgow. The victim’s brother, Ari, said Jonathan, known as Yoni, ran Glasgow’s Jewish Youth Council and led a Jewish youth delegation to the Scottish Parliament.
“If he could have helped people during his life he would have, but now that he can’t, at least he can help people in death,” Ari Jesner said. “The family is very proud that (Jonathan) was able to give life to others. Life was given to another human being. What religion, nationality, race, culture or creed is not what’s important here.”
Ari Jesner said the family had no immediate plans to meet with the recipient’s family. “We are glad their daughter was able to be saved,” he said.