A young boy with a strange condition has left people completely baffled as he keeps forgetting everything about himself every night.
Sam Tai and his mother
Sam Tai, the teenage boy loses his memory each night and has to be reminded who he is and what has happened.
According to Mirror Online, Sam cannot remember who the Prime Minister is, the plots of his favourite TV shows or books, or even the names of them.
The names of his friends are a mystery and he could not tell you his date of birth, or where he went to primary school.
He cannot recall the Olympics despite watching them all. He doesn’t know what music he likes – but finds out by browsing his YouTube search history.
Details of his GCSEs – finished last year – are a black hole. Despite being a talented cook, he doesn’t know how to make anything more complex than toast.
The 17-year-old suffered a freak brain injury six weeks ago, after a tackle whilst playing rugby. Immediately after the match, Sam, from York, was tested at the sidelines for concussion, but was declared well.
Then, hours later, he woke up in the night and had forgotten who his 18-year-old girlfriend Ellie Watson was, shouting at her: “Who are you? Get out of my bed?”
He was rushed to hospital, where scans came back clear.
But since then, his memory has not returned – and his family do not know if it ever will. Now Sam cannot remember anything from the past – and forgets everything he is told within 24 hours.
“Every morning I tell him he has a brother,” his mum Jane Tai said. “I say, ‘You’ve a 20-year-old brother, Dan, who is a rugby player.
“He says, ‘Wow that’s cool!’ and his face lights up. But the next day he cannot remember Dan and needs to be told again.”
Jane Tai with sons Sam and Dan
He also cannot remember his dad, Rob Tai, who lives in Sri Lanka, and his mum. His school years are similarly a mystery, as is the layout of his home.
“He walked into my study the other day and exclaimed how nice it was. He said, ‘Wow, what a lovely house,’” his mum said. “But he has been living here for years.”
Sam’s story echoes that of Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, in the film Fifty First Dates.
Doctors are unsure what has caused Sam’s amnesia , although he is having regular checkups at York Hospital and undergoing tests. MRI scans show no physical damage.
At the moment, he is just resting and letting his brain recover.
A remarkable moment came last week, when he recreated a complex karate movement from memory alongside Dave Cartawick, his instructor from BKKA – a northern club.
Captured on film, this has been shared 58,000 times on Facebook. “I think there are different parts of the brain dictating different aspects of memory,” his mum said. All I really know is he is amazing.”
Sam added: “I can remember I have a dad and mum. But not anymore. They are basically like strangers.
“It’s hard to explain. But I have got used to it. I am not too bothered about it. You’ve just got to get on with it.
“I am not physically injured. I relearn everything every day and I am positive every day.”
Sam’s family are being supported by the brain injury charity Headway.