Steve Jobs Refused Tim Cook's Offer of a Bit of His Liver for a Transplant

By Gary Cutlack on at

According to reports based around a forthcoming book about Steve Jobs, Tim Cook once attempted the ultimate sacrifice in loyalty to his then boss -- offering sickened Steve Jobs part of his own liver for a transplant.

The claim comes from new biography Becoming Steve Jobs, co-written by Rick Tetzeli and Brent Schlender. Extracts have been published on Tetzeli's own site Fast Company, where he quotes how Cook raised the issue of a transplant with Jobs: "I said, ‘Steve, I'm perfectly healthy, I've been checked out. Here's the medical report. I can do this and I'm not putting myself at risk, I'll be fine'."

This came after Cook had conducted his own research into Jobs's liver condition, learning that it's possible to transplant a piece of a liver from a health person to a donor -- and that Cook and Jobs both had the same blood type, making the option feasible.

Jobs was not up for it, though. Cook told Tetzeli: "And he doesn't think about it. It was not, 'Are you sure you want to do this?' It was not, 'I'll think about it.' It was not, 'Oh, the condition I'm in...' It was, 'No, I'm not doing that!' He kind of popped up in bed and said that. And this was during a time when things were just terrible. Steve only yelled at me four or five times during the 13 years I knew him, and this was one of them."