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We Might Take These for Granted, But They Can Mean Life or Death for Someone Else

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While many of us take for granted our two kidneys and beating heart, others don’t have that luxury. In fact, every 10 minutes someone is added to an organ recipient wait list.

Did you know that April is National Donate Life Month? It might not be the most well-known holiday, but it’s a day that has the potential to save lives — and that’s worth celebrating. Here’s what the official Donate Life website has to say about its April holiday:

Celebrated in April each year, National Donate Life Month (NDLM) features an entire month of local, regional and national activities to help encourage Americans to register as organ, eye and tissue donors and to celebrate those that have saved lives through the gift of donation.

For the 2014 National Donate Life Month artwork, the Donate Life America team was inspired by springtime and the symbol of a flying kite. Spring is a season of new life that calls to mind the many men, women and children whose lives have been saved or healed by organ, eye and tissue donation. Likewise, the kite is an image that appeals to all ages, genders and nationalities and is often associated with hope and celebration.

How have people been changed by organ donation?

Watch the video above of Allyssa Bates telling her story: “Confessions of a Kidney Donor.”

 

Recipient vows to finish donor’s bucket list

You may be familiar with Susan Vieira, who recently told her story to the Huffington Post. The 64-year-old woman was the recipient of a heart transplant, and later vowed to do everything possible to make her donor’s unfulfilled dreams come true.

The woman who gave her life? 21-year-old nursing student Kristina Chesterman, who died after being hit by a drunken driver while riding home on her bicycle. Her legacy now lives on, both in her family’s hearts and in the lives of those she’s since saved. Through her option of organ donation, at least five people have been saved. Five!

Vieira, who received Chesterman’s heart, was one of those people, as she had suffered from congestive heart failure and would’ve likely died without a transplant. She has since promised to do all she can to fulfill the bucket list that the young woman had made for herself when she was alive. What does that entail? “She wanted to fly a plane, she wanted to travel extensively and she wanted to ride a camel,” Chesterman’s mom told a local news outlet.

Watch a video on Vieira’s story on the next page.

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Lo Lankford

Lo Lankford is a recent Los Angeles transplant after a decade in the Big Apple. In her "spare time" (ha!) she used to run a dog rescue called Badass Brooklyn and helped save over 400 dogs. Otherwise? Nerd'do well, whistle blower, proud hillbilly from the sticks.

61 comments

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3:07PM PDT on Jul 20, 2014

When I am finished using my organs, they can have them all.

10:49AM PDT on May 14, 2014

fine take my organs but i refuse to live healty so that my organs can be used later i have been abused and used enough in life

7:35PM PDT on May 10, 2014

Noted.

7:28PM PDT on May 10, 2014

They can also use my organ's, there no good to us when gone. And by giving to SAVE A LIFE MAKES ME FEEL VERY PROUD AND HEART WARMING INSIDE. Thank-you for sharing. Theresa Robinson.

4:58AM PDT on May 10, 2014

Thanks.

4:22AM PDT on May 6, 2014

Thanks

3:18AM PDT on May 6, 2014

Thank you :)

4:48AM PDT on May 2, 2014

Don't take what we've got for granted

10:03AM PDT on Apr 26, 2014

ty

2:10AM PDT on Apr 24, 2014

I have a friend who has just received a kidney and is doing well, with a good prognosis.
Thank you to all Donors.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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