Last year, the events on Dec. 16, 2010, forever changed the lives of five families. Chris Henry, the Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver, was thrown from a moving vehicle and died of his injuries. And even though Carolyn Glaspy, the mother of Chris Henry, was grieving for her son, she had the courage to make the decision to donate Henry’s organs.
Because of her actions that day, a woman received Chris’ pancreas and one of his kidneys, a man received his liver, another received both of his lungs, and one other man received his other kidney, according to CBS Sports. This year, Glaspy finally met the people whose lives were changed by the gifts that Henry gave to them. Carolyn, the four people who received Chris’ organs, their families, and the doctors all met to give thanks for Henry’s life. As Glaspy hugged the organ recipients around her, she said, “I think this is my closure,” according to NBC Sports.
The lesson that can be learned from this story this holiday season is the power of organ donation. In the tragedy of the death of one person can come a miracle for many others through organ donation. So here is another story about the miracle of organ donation.
Wendy Shiroda, a 41-year-old woman from Baton Rouge, LA, is thankful this year for her new life. She happily recounts her story, and her second birthday, Feb. 11, when she received her new liver.
You see, at age 18, Shiroda was diagnosed with liver disease, and, after a liver bypass, she was able to live with the disease until a couple of years ago, when her health declined, according to WAFB. Wendy was in need of a liver transplant and fast. She received two calls that they had a liver for her, only to then tell her that it was a false alarm. Then on Feb. 11, 2009, Wendy got the call that would change her life forever: They had a kidney for her.
So Shirod received a liver from an anonymous donor whom she can’t thank enough. Without the liver, the then-deteriorating Wendy would have wasted away. Now, she can celebrate life with her son and husband and look forward to many more holidays to come.
There are many more stories of organ donation out there, and with everybody’s help, there will be many more.
CBS Sports, “Chris Henry’s Legacy Lives on” CBS Sports
NBC Sports, “Chris Henry’s mother gets her closure” NBC Sports
Kiran Chawla, “Family gives special thanks to organ donation” WAFB