This month’s newsletter has its focus on organ donation and the importance of donating. We are honored to have three special articles about organ donation.
We are sharing information that will help you, your family and friends think about saving lives. We can see through these testimonies how people through their unselfish acts of compassion both in life and death can help others live rich and fulfilling lives.
Health and Human Services Committee
Link member donates organ
(It is the wish of the family not to disclose who the organ donor was and we are honoring the families wish.)
“Please promise me that when the time comes you will honor my decision to be an organ donor.” My sister had a terminal disease which she embraced with dignity. She called a meeting of our immediate family to let us know her final wishes regarding her body.
As a physician and Professor of Pulmonary Research, my sister came face to face with her own destiny as she diagnosed her very rare, terminal lung disease. It did not come as a real surprise to any of us when my sister told us that she had made the necessary notations on her driver’s license to donate her organs. This was one of the first steps she took to declare her intent. When my beloved sister’s journey ended, she was able to give the gift of sight…a final perfect act.
Organ recipient experiences new heights after transplant
To the masses Michael Dexter seems like a normal guy. He was born and raised in Tampa and attended Tampa Catholic High School where he served as the school’s first Black student body president. After high school he attended Hillsborough Community College and University of South Florida. Michael currently teaches law and criminal justice at Jefferson High School.
More than 17 years ago Michael experienced one of the biggest scares of his life. “I had a seizure while teaching a cultural diversity course. I was told I had a bleeding of the brain after going to the hospital.” Michael survived his stroke and damage to his brain but not the damage to his kidneys. He was forced to be connected to a dialysis machine for nine hours every night for over 18 months. When he received the phone call stating he had a match for a kidney “I was terrified because it meant I was going to have surgery.
Now, 15 years after his surgery Michael says he feels better today than he did after the operation. “Dialysis allowed me to be alive, but my kidney transplant allowed me to live.”
Life is great for Tampa, Florida pastor after organ transplant
When encouraging people to be an organ donor, Pastor Julius Wynn always makes reference to a bumper sticker “Don’t take your organs to heaven; heaven knows we need them here.” In January 2008, Pastor Wynn received the gift of a new kidney from a member of his congregation. “I was amazed that someone would do that for me,” said Pastor Wynn of his living kidney donor Ms. Martha Kitchens. Though Pastor Wynn received his kidney from a living donor, he realizes how important it is for people to sign up to be a deceased donor.
Pastor Wynn was diagnosed with kidney failure due to high blood pressure. He is able to play golf at the renowned Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina, witness his daughter’s graduation from college and obtain his Doctorate of Education in Leadership. “There were days when I couldn’t go to work or get out of bed because the bad fluids had taken over,” Pastor Wynn said of his life before he received his transplant. “Now I have an opportunity to do regular things that a lot of times people take for granted.”