By Kelly Newland, donor mother
My husband, Mark, and I have been riding motorcycles for more than a decade. Today, we know that our son, Adam, rides with us.
Adam had a great sense of humor and was a bit of a jokester too. He played football, karate and was a talented artist. Adam was an all around good kid.
A love of motorcycles is something our family shared. I ride a Suzuki Boulevard and my husband rides a Honda Valkyrie. When Adam was a teenager, he had a Honda 1100 and worked with his dad to rehab the bike. We still have his bike! Adam’s older brother, Ryan, is planning on getting his motorcycle endorsement so he will be riding it!
Adam only had the chance to ride his bike a few times before he passed away on June 3, 2005, two months shy of his eighteenth birthday.
When we were asked if we would like to donate Adam’s organs and tissue, we immediately said yes. I remembered a conversation we had when he came home from school one day and Adam asked me how he could become an organ donor.
Adam told me he donated blood at school and said, “I have good stuff and if something happened to me, I’d want someone else to have it.”
He wanted to give to others, and we were glad to honor this wish.
Adam touched so many lives during his life. We were told that neither the funeral home or church would be large enough for his funeral and they were right. 1000 people came to pay their respects at the high school gym where he just attended his junior senior prom a few weeks before! I was truly amazed.
Our son also touched many lives after his death. Adam was able to donate his heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, pancreas, corneas and tissue. He saved the lives of five others and enhanced many more.
A few years after losing our son, we met two of his organ recipients. It was a bittersweet experience and was helpful to see the gifts Adam gave helping others live.
Since losing Adam, we share his story and encourage others to register as donors. He as an awesome human being and he lives on through the gifts he gave.