Tim’s Story by his mom, Annie Boxsell Whitaker

The story you are about to read is about Tim Whitaker.  Tim had pulmonary hypertension and was dying.  This is the story of his last day.  Tim’s mom Annie is a brave woman!  She and her family stood by Tim with all the love they could muster to help Tim in his illness. . .hope was always there that he would survive. . .but as time passed, it became apparent that he would not survive.

This story is poignant, heartfelt and very brave.  Tim became an organ donor and helped others get another chance at life.

I salute Tim and Annie Boxsell Whitaker and the entire family!!!  You showed tremendous courage and support.  How could a mother forget the child of her womb???

Please remember to become an organ donor. . .As many of you know, I am alive because of an organ donor.            I received my gift of life, a double lung transplant on September 30, 2005.  ORGAN DONORS GIVE LIFE!!!


It was at this exact time I woke up 4.30am NSW daylight saving time 7 yrs ago, March 30 Aussie calendar, Timothy had been told the during the night he could stay on treatment and die slowly over a week or maybe couple, or option 2 withdraw all treatment and die tomorrow. Even at this point he was being a guinea pig and they were pumping inhaled illoprost into his heart via a Hickman’s line at half the dose as we could not afford any more money- we had run dry. He was trying to give the doctors some proof the IV meds would work, there were none in Australia. He agonised all night and screamed and argued, what about an artificial heart, what about trying this, or that – NO! was the brutal but honest answer, we had run out of everything – I think he had 5 or 7 lumens plus IV’s into his arms as well.

We knew something was up we were all exhausted but all woke up about 4.30 and got showered and dressed. By 5 we were sitting there and I said I will text Tim maybe he is awake and we can text, something weird is going on- he texted back – ‘come straight in mum- now’ – That was when he told us as the sun came up , that at 7am the registrar was going to pull every line out one by one and he would die this day, he would not put us or himself through any more, he knew we had nothing left to give except love. I did not cry, I did not fight , I did not scream. I said “ I totally understand the decision you have made and why and we will not leave you alone until this is over” he had several heart attacks as his left arm was paining, not his chest and they gave him some morphine for the pain after having to almost beg for it- he said he would be gone by 11.30 he had worked out due to how many nanograms per milligram he was getting, of our cheating drug.

He told us all around his bed that he loved us and what we meant to him – he got to me last and said there are no words for what we have “you’re my mum and that says everything in one word”- then we just tended his needs as they came up, including a drink of coke – the fluid restrictions were out the window now. When I had my arms around him at 10.22 I felt a rush of energy go through me and I said “he has left, he is gone” – they said no his heart is still beating, I said “I am his mother I felt his breeze go through my soul he is no longer here”, they came back and said yes he has gone now – well I had already told them that!

Some people say I should not have a calendar or dwell on this day- well that would mean no birthdays, no mothers days, no Christmases etc. I have to have this day in honour of the bravery and what Timothy and we faced, what we fought for and what we endured for years- what he stood for in the PH community here on overseas, he lived 5 yrs longer than his original 3 months!  Back then that was big☺,  he sighed and left and one tear dropped on his pillow (I stole the pillow case)- we stayed for a couple hours and then drove back up the freeway for 2.5 hours in silence, the only occasional noise was Philip taking in a short deep breath in the back seat. I can’t forget this day and I can’t let it drop, he did a lot of unconventional, unapproved things to get these medications here. Today we are staying together as family, this is so important to me and planting frangipani trees for him 10 in fact from his own garden cuttings we have been mothering them along- I am also setting his wall of candles which give me great peace over the years to know he lives on in the memory of others, it is a parents greatest fear, after the worst fear of losing your child is that they will be forgotten as time moves on without them. We will cry and we will laugh over Tim things. Please if you met him, loved him, know him through me/us or never met him but want to remember him feel free to light a candle on his wall- I know he would get a hoot out of this screen of notes an virtual candles – he would love this techno world we now live in- Facebook was not even in the world yet or if so just as a baby face. Love to you all and thanks for letting me let some of this out. We still have counseling mainly for all the stuff that happened before this date, for the fight before he succumbed to Pulmonary Hypertension – I am so grateful things have progressed and often thank Tim for playing his part in that process. Love Annie


>the group name to put in is “TimW” thank-you my friends for helping us through this, especially when we have a bad day and thank you for sharing laughs with us on funny Tim days. When we tell a story and people allow us to be free and not made feel uncomfortable. It is an ongoing process I have now realised. Part of our lives, part of who we are because of Timothy James Walker. 7/9/1979 – 30/03/2006 xo ♥

Sandy Ozanich (C) June 2013

5 thoughts on “Tim’s Story by his mom, Annie Boxsell Whitaker

    • Hi Jamie

      Yes, this story is such a sad story, the saving or redeeming grace is that others lives were saved by Tim’s donation of his own organs. . .

      I knew about little Sarah, she lives in Philadelphia. I understand she is doing well. I live in Pittsburgh, so we got daily news stories about her. I am so pleased that it happened for her. There are so many others in her situation, so I continue to hope there will be a way for them.

      May you be blessed! SandyO

      Jesus is coming!!! (look busy!) I invite you to visit my blogs: https://sandyshopefulroom.wordpress.com http://breathingitsagoodthing.wordpress.com

      Blessed are the Cracked – for they are the ones who let in the light!

      When the power of love overcomes the love of power then peace has a chance in this world. . .

  1. What a post! As i complete reading and think about it, what jumps out at me are the long sentences which are but the unadulterated, undiluted thoughts of an exceptionally brave and aware mum. I dwell some more and think of my take-away. There has to be one even from such a poignantly direct writing such as this. Surprisingly I do not seem to get one, I wonder why.

    Thank you for this experience….. I realise now this is my take-away.


    • Shakti,

      I’m glad you “got” that take-away. It is a tough story written by his mum, this is her story and her family’s story. It is heart-rending,
      but the saving grace as I see it is the donation of Tim’s organs so that others can live. Even Tim finally decided that it was time. As a
      mother it tears my heart into pieces – thinking about standing next to his bed, wishing him alive, yet realizing he must go. . .

      I hear you and I do understand.
      Thank you so much for your wonderful comments. I wish you well.

      May you be blessed!

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