National Donor Day a reminder of the gift of life inside us all

The parents of 8-year-old Alexis had the courage, love and heart to allow their daughter be a hero for six people across the nation.

In 2009, Alexis’ life was cut tragically short when she was hit in the head with a basketball on the playground at school, causing brain bleeding. After being pronounced brain dead, her parents decided to honor her memory as someone who was always trying to help people and donated her organs.

She was able to save six lives with eight organs and improve the quality of life for so many others. Two young children were able to see their first Easter because they received her corneas. An 8 year-old Maryland boy’s life was saved with Alexis’ heart.

A 17-year-old girl in Pittsburgh received both lungs and a man in New York got intestines. Her liver and both kidneys also went to those who needed them.

There are hundreds of heroes just like Alexis across Michigan. In 2012, the generosity of 261 Michigan organ donors resulted in 777 organs transplanted.

Gift of Life Michigan is an Ann Arbor-based non-profit working 24 hours a day across the state as a liaison between donors, hospitals and transplant centers to help save lives.

Gift of Life Michigan helps to educate people about organ and tissue donation and to fulfill their desire to someday help others by becoming a donor.

“We realize that over 3,000 people on the organ transplant waiting list in Michigan rely upon our work to help them live productive, fulfilling lives,” said CEO Richard Pietroski. “It’s our honor and our responsibility to serve them, just as we are humbled by the generosity of donors and their families.”

Want to share your love any day and save a life? Sign up here, call (800) 482-4881 or visit any Secretary of State office. You will receive a red heart donor emblem for the front of your driver’s license or ID card.

Photo credit: Gift of Life

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