Mother & Transplant Recipient On The Importance Of Organ Donation

MEMPHIS, Tenn. ( - Today is National Donate Life Blue and Green Day. The public is encouraged to wear those colors as part of National Donate Life month. And a special event is being held Friday night.

There are fewer registered donors in Mississippi and Tennessee than in the rest of the United States. On average, 22 people die each day waiting for an organ.

Two women who've benefited from the organ donation process want you to learn about the importance of organ donation.

“It gives me so much to know my child made such a big decision," said mother Kristin Mitchell.

Mitchell is talking about her son, Brennan Rucker. The teen died December 2015. Mitchell had no idea until after his death he had signed up as an organ donor.

“Because of that unselfish act, I'm here, I'm here," said transplant recipient Stephanie Hamlet.

Hamlet received Rucker’s heart just days after he passed. She had been living in the hospital waiting for a matching donor.

“It's just amazing and when I got this heart, I found out it's just a perfect match, something that is very rare, very rare. Very rare that it's a perfect match," said Hamlet.

Rucker's choice to be an organ donor saved or helped five lives.

“The heroic act of what he did keeps me going every day," said Mitchell.

The two now want to spread the message about the importance of organ donation. The tragic loss of one person’s life literally saved many others.

“It's so worth it. This journey to be able to be sitting here with Stephanie and her, and seeing how miraculous it is, it’s amazing," said Mitchell.

Hamlet is holding an organ donation awareness fundraiser Friday night. It'll be at Terry's Event Center on Martin Luther King in West Memphis from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. It costs $10. All proceeds go to the Mid-South Transplant Foundation and Donate Life.



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