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Be an organ donor and you can save, change lives

Editor:
      April is Donate Life Month. Do you have “organ donor” imprinted on your driver’s license? Have you ever given it a second thought about what it really means?
      Before my family was touched personally by organ donation, I had no clue. My son, Thomas, sustained a traumatic head injury on August 12, 2008. Despite everything that was done, he died as a result of the injury five days later. My son had designated that he wanted to be an organ donor when he received his driver’s license. Because of this, we knew his wishes when the decision had to be made.
      In January 2009, I began volunteering with LifeLink of Georgia, the local organ procurement organization. I have spoken at local schools, civic organizations, and churches sharing my son’s story of giving the ultimate gift – The Gift of Life.
      On Saturday, March 27, 2010 the first Donate Life 5K Walk/Run was held at the RAC at GSU. A Georgia Southern student, Taryn Mason, from Wisconsin, organized the event. Her younger brother, Danny, was born with a disease called Prune Belly syndrome and suffered from kidney failure.
      On March 29, 2007, Danny received his Gift of Life thanks to a living kidney donation from his father. It’s because of this Taryn wanted to give back to the Donate Life community
      “Team Thomas” was quickly formed to become involved in the Donate Life 5K. I helped Taryn gain support from community businesses. I was overwhelmed and humbled at the generosity of the local businesses in supporting this worthwhile cause.
      I would like to thank the following businesses for their contributions and donations: Anderson’s General Store, Applebee’s, The Beaver House, Lynne Bennett, Boanart Graphics, Gisele Bolton, Books-A-Million, Krystal Bragg, Buffalo’s, Amanda Cartee, Chick-Fil-A, Chili’s, Colonial House of Flowers, Alison Corbin, Dairy Queen, Audra Dalu, Don Corleone’s, El Sombrero, Fordham’s, Nona Farmer, Frazier’s Flowers, Free Spirit Pottery & Design, Chris Gay, Harvey’s, Healthy Touch Spa, Heavenly Ham, The Hen House, The Herb Shop and Organic Foods, Holiday Inn/Emma’s, Holiday Pizza, Martha Johnson, Larry’s Giant Subs, Latte Da, Longhorn’s, Mason & Co., Maurice’s, McAlister’s, LaVerne McBride, Julie McGuire, Medical Center Pharmacy, The Mellow Mushroom, Merle Norman, The Millhouse, Ocean Galley, The Olive Garden, Michelle Orvin, The Performing Arts Center, RJ’s Steakhouse, Latrelle Rocker, Ruby Tuesday, Ryan’s, Nathan Schmidt, Serenity Day Spa, Shane’s Rib Rack, The Sir Shop, Statesboro Optical, Starbuck’s, Sugar Magnolia Bakery, Tillman, Brannen, & Minick, Tom’s Painting, Uncle Shug’s, Vandy’s.

   Because of the generous donations, we raised over $3,000 for Donate Life. Thank you again!
      You have the power to donate life! Sign up today to become an organ, tissue, and eye donor  at www.donatelifegeorgia.org. One organ and tissue donor can save up to 60 lives! For more information on organ and tissue donation visit www.lifelinkfound.org.
Susan Puckett
Portal

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