Lucas Community celebrates hero Shelby Cooper, joins forces to decorate Floragraph
Oh, the places Shelby Cooper’s family will go this holiday season to celebrate their daughter’s legacy!
Shelby’s Gift of Life was honored Wednesday in her hometown at Lucas Heritage Middle School as her friends and family gathered to remember her and finish decorating her floragraph, which will be featured in the 2013 Tournament of Roses Parade on the Donate Life float.
Lucas Principal Eric Teague hosted the event, which included teacher and student speakers close to the family, an unveiling of the Donate Life float rendering, and honored recipients of scholarships set up in Shelby’s honor. Full of gratitude, Shelby’s parents, Tim and Tammy Cooper and brother, Scott Cooper joyfully finished decorating the floragraph in the very place that meant so much to Shelby.
Shelby Cooper gave the Gift of Life to three organ recipients when she became an organ donor on October 21, 2004 at the age of 16. Her family shared with the audience the story of Shelby’s wishes to be an organ donor and reinforced the life-saving power one choice can have on others.
The floragraph of Shelby’s face is one of 72 memorial portraits of deceased donors who will be featured on the tenth Donate Life Rose Parade float entry, “Journeys of the Heart.” Comprised entirely of organic materials, a floragraph is a 13” x 13” circular portrait representing a photo of the donor. All 72 floragraphs will be featured on the float celebrating the crossing of paths and joyful hearts that connect 107 million registered donors together. Riding along with them will be 32 honorees carrying the message and spirit of deceased organ, eye, and tissue donors, living donors, and transplant recipients.
The Cooper family will travel to Pasadena, Calif. on January 1, 2013 to take part in the Rose Parade. “We are honored to have the Coopers’ represent Lifeline of Ohio and all of our donor families, whose loved ones are heroes of donation, ” said Jenny Hoover, bereavement services coordinator at Lifeline of Ohio.
The 2013 Tournament of Roses Parade, themed “Oh the Places You Will Go,” will air nationally on January 1at 8AM PST, 11AM EST. We hope you will tune in to see Shelby’s floragraph and help celebrate the new life made possible through organ and tissue donation.
For more information on the Donate Life float, please visit www.donatelifefloat.org.