We Stand Amazed – Our Daughter’s Donation Story
Monday, September 12, 2011 brought profound sadness in our lives – we lost our daughter Carrie. However, while we were grieving her death that day it was also one of our proudest moments – Carrie was able to give the gift of sight to two people.
Carrie was 35 years old when she finished her earthly work. In her death, she donated her corneas to a 35 year-old man and a 51 year-old woman. I have written them a letter because our family wants them to know how proud we are they see this world through the eyes of our daughter, but I have not been brave enough to mail it yet.
Carrie was more than our daughter. She was the mother to Troy and Hunter. She worked at an accounting firm for seventeen years. Her clients still shares stories, a testimony to her far-reaching gifts.
Carrie had a knack for picking out the perfect card – she would search the card aisles until she found the right one. She made it her mission to find one with humor and to perfectly fit the occasion – she always said anyone could find a mushy one! I love to take her cards out of the drawer and read them over and over.
She had a love for books and reading. It is a great memory to have visited her home and see books by her chair; one stack read and the other waiting to be enjoyed.
To honor her love of reading we created a book ministry called “In Memory Of?” We give books to needy children whose families would consider the purchase of a new book a luxury when personal circumstances find it hard to meet monthly expenses. To date we have presented over 1,350 books- most of them stamped with Carrie’s name. Recently we partnered with United Way of Marion County to get books into the hands of more children through the “Let’s Read 20” program.
Our family has partnered with fourteen businesses in Marion to spread awareness of organ, eye and tissue donation through brochures, green Donate Life bracelets, and LifeSavers candies. These special friends help celebrate Carrie’s legacy.
Every day as I put on my green bracelet, I am reminded of the strength I find in knowing I have a support team at Lifeline of Ohio. I think often of the man who talked with us the night Carrie died and how he mourned and comforted us as we answered questions to honor her wishes as a registered donor. Our family believes, with Lifeline of Ohio, you never stand alone; you will stand amazed.
Through Carrie’s decision to donate, and her gifts of sight, our family has felt comfort, courage, hope and love. While we miss her daily, we believe God is using us to help others – like Carrie did. Encourage others to register as a donor; be someone’s miracle; impact others’ lives. Our family continues to advocate for donation and ask, “Have you said yes?”