Category Archives: Giving and Living
To Remember Me
By Robert Noel Test (1926-1994)
The day will come when my body will lie upon a white sheet neatly tucked under four corners of a mattress located in a hospital; busily occupied with the living and the dying.
At a certain moment a doctor will determine that my brain has ceased to function and that, for all intents and purposes, my life has stopped. When that happens, do not attempt to instill artificial life into my body by the use of a machine. And don’t call this my deathbed. Let it be called the bed of life, and let my body be taken from it to help others lead fuller lives.
- Give my sight to the man who has never seen a sunrise, a baby’s face or love in the eyes of a woman.
- Give my heart to a person whose own heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain.
- Give my blood to the teenager who was pulled from the wreckage of his car, so that he might live to see his grandchildren play.
- Give my kidneys to the one who depends on a machine to exist from week to week.
- Take my bones, every muscle, every fiber and nerve in my body and find a way to make a crippled child walk.
- Explore every corner of my brain.
- Take my cells, if necessary, and let them grow so that, someday a speechless boy will shout at the crack of a bat and a deaf girl will hear the sound of rain against her window.
- Burn what is left of me and scatter the ashes to the winds to help the flowers grow.
- If you must bury something, let it be my faults, my weakness and all prejudice against my fellow man….
- If, by chance, you wish to remember me, do it with a kind deed or word to someone who needs you.
If you do all I have asked, I will live forever.
Bob Aronson is a 2007 heart transplant recipient, the founder of Facebook’s 1700 member Organ Transplant Initiative and the writer of most of these donation/transplantation blogs on Bob’s Newheart.
You may comment in the space provided or email your thoughts to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. And – please spread the word about the immediate need for more organ donors. There is nothing you can do that is of greater importance. If you convince one person to be an organ and tissue donor you may save or positively affect over 60 lives. Some of those lives may be people you know and love.
Please view our video “Thank You From the Bottom of my Donor’s heart” on http://www.organti.org This video was produced to promote organ donation so it is free and no permission is needed for its use.
If you want to spread the word personally about organ donation, we have a PowerPoint slide show for your use free and for use without permission. Just go to http://www.organti.org and click on “Life Pass It On” on the left side of the screen and then just follow the directions. This is NOT a stand-alone show, it needs a presenter but is professionally produced and factually sound.
Also…there is more information on this blog site about other donation/transplantation issues. Additionally we would love to have you join our Facebook group, Organ Transplant Initiative The more members we get the greater our clout with decision makers.
Normal organ donation efforts are failing. However admirable they are, or however hard we all work, the gap between registered donors and the people who need transplants is growing wider each year. Short of scrapping UNOS (United Network for Organ Sharing) and the 1984 National Organ Transplantation Act (http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d098:SN02048:@@@L%7CTOM:/bss/d098query.html) which would take years of political bickering and result in little if any progress, I suggest we think big — really BIG! OK, here is where Bob sticks his neck out; following is my dream — my 50,000 foot strategic view. It only lacks the planning and tactical work J.
I propose that America hold a week-long party in the next five years to celebrate organ donation and transplantation with the goal of narrowing or eliminating the gap between organ and tissue donors and those who need transplants. Held in each state with a closing spectacular event in the nation’s capitol, we could honor transplant recipients, donors and their families as special guests. I propose, too that we should initiate a parallel effort to work with UNOS/OPTN (Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network) to effect policy changes.
Will this be expensive? Yes. A lot of work?” Yes again. But who is to say it cannot be done. Think of the benefits. If we have enough tissue and organs, more people could benefit. In the next ten years at least 100,000 more people will die on the transplant waiting list and there is no way of counting those who just die and never get on the list. We can stop the dying! I will volunteer my time and energy to help accomplish this goal. Who wants to sign on with me and what will you do to help?
We need sponsors, organizers and so much more. My dream envisions an event that includes nationally respected speakers, special events, entertainment, celebrities, national telethons, awards, patient and donor stories, special professional conferences (example; transplants for people who can’t afford them, how the media can help promote donation), workshops and, of course, international media coverage. Can a real grass roots effort succeed in America? Let us find out through this Giving and Living celebration. This could be the most massive organ donation effort in history.
I have given the preceding idea some thought, not enough obviously, but some. I have consulted with no one, anywhere. You, my reader friends, are the first to hear of it. Please offer your ideas, your help and your comments. I do not know if my dream can be realized but I know it will not be if I do not try. I know this for sure, it must be a major nationwide effort that includes everyone in every community if we are to increase organ donation to the point where anyone who needs an organ can get one.