Devon

Devon rugby player Lily Partridge's donated organs 'saved lives'

Lily Partridge Image copyright Irving of Exeter
Image caption Lily Partridge had played for Exonian Ladies for about 18 months

A female rugby player who died after being hurt in a tackle during a game has saved the lives of at least four people, it has been revealed.

Lily Partridge suffered a head injury when she was fatally injured during a county training event earlier this month.

The part time teacher and zookeeper, 22, from Exeter, carried two donor cards.

Her organs were retrieved before her life support machine was turned off.

Around 400 mourners, some wearing rugby shirts, turned up for Miss Partridge's funeral at Exeter Cathedral on Tuesday.

The congregation heard: "Lily's family would like to share something with you all today, just three days before Christmas, the traditional time for giving and receiving.

Image caption Lily Partridge's funeral was held at Exeter Cathedral

"Lily gave her Christmas gifts early. She has given the gift of life to four total strangers and more people will benefit in the weeks and months ahead."

"Three young adults and a middle aged person have now been saved and face a New Year with a new lease of life and full of hope."

Ms Partridge, who collapsed by the side of the pitch after being injured at North Tawton's Devon ground earlier in December, had a history of concussions.

Her family has stressed that no one was to blame for the accident two weeks ago and said Miss Partridge had been at the happiest point on her life both personally and professionally.

The front rower was a founder member of the Exonian ladies rugby team based at Topsham, Devon, and had played the game for 18 months.

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