We’re continuing to share personal stories about organ donation. The stories are submitted by families who have worked closely with Unyts following the death of a loved one. Take a few minutes to read this very personal story of a parents love for their child and the gift of life that she gave to others…
On January 12, 2005, our 24 year old daughter Laurie, choked on a meatball while eating dinner. Our attempts at the Heimlich maneuver were unsuccessful, as were attempts by ambulance personnel. The obstruction was finally removed with forceps in the hospital emergency room. Laurie had been without oxygen for approximately twenty minutes and was left with only minimal brain stem activity. She was put on life support and six days later, on January 18th, she was declared brain dead. We were presented with many difficult decisions in those six days, but the easiest decision we had to make was to donate her organs.
Laurie was born with Down Syndrome and for 24 years, our lives had revolved around her. Everyone who met her instantly fell in love with her, and we loved her more than life itself. We couldn’t imagine life without her. By donating her organs, she wouldn’t just be…gone. She would live on in five people. That is still what gets us up in the morning and through each day without her. We still miss her terribly, but are consoled that she saved the lives of five people; that she was a hero.