Faces of Tamworth: Fiona Coote

Updated February 18 2018 - 7:08am, first published 6:39am
PICTURE OF HEALTH: Former Manilla resident Fiona Coote marked 30 years since her first heart transplant at St Vincent’s Hospital this week. Pictured with Associate Professor Phillip Spratt, the pair cut a heart-shaped cake to celebrate the anniversary. Photo: Anthony Johnson

Our Faces of Tamworth list could hardly be complete without Fiona Coote – especially in the week the federal government committed to developing a Childhood Heart Disease National Action Plan jointly with HeartKids. Born and bred in Manilla and later a Tamworth resident, Ms Coote was the youngest heart transplant recipient, and only the fourth ever, in the nation when renowned surgeon Dr Victor Change performed the surgery. Just 14 years old, complications from a bout of tonsilitis had weakened her heart. About two years after the first, Ms Coote had another heart transplant because the first began to fail. Throughout her years since, Ms Coote has generously shared her time and story to advance many causes. Here, we look back to 2014, when Ms Coote marked 30 years since her first transplant gave her another chance in life.

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