A man was given a kidney by his wife.
John Ford had been suffering from kidney failure and was put onto the organ donation register shortly after he retired.
His daughter and nephew were tested to see if they were suitable donors but they proved not to be a match.
But a test on his wife proved positive and an operation was carried out earlier this year and they are both making their recovery at their South Shields home.
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He has admitted his squad were simply not good enough to avoid another scrap for Barclays Premier League survival.
The incident took place on Sunday October 4th close to Marton Road in the town.
71-year-old Robert Howard was in jail at HMP Frankland and was due to give evidence at a re-ordered inquest in Belfast.