- Death & Loss of Life
#HumboldtBroncos: Player's Organ Donation Gives People A Fighting Chance
A "Selfless Hero"
Organ Donation: Tough, Life Saving Choices
I have been incredibly fortunate in this life that neither of my two kids have struggled much with their health beyond the usual childhood illnesses. Sure, my oldest had tonsilitis, and while her tonsils and adenoids were so large when she was little that they caused her sleep apnea, their removal was quick, and she's hardly been sick in the 10 years since they were removed.
I have never had to worry about things like their place on the organ transplant list, or tissue matches, or dialysis, or how quickly their vision is failing, or any of the host of serious medical conditions - things that so many people worldwide worry about with their loved ones - that might require an organ transplant. As a parent, I've not had to think about, as Logan Boulet's parents did a few days ago, carrying out my child's wishes and honor their request to be an organ donor should the unthinkable happen.
According to Global News, Logan Boulet, who played defence for the Humboldt Broncos, signed his organ donor card once he turned 21. His organs were harvested Saturday, according to his father Toby, and six matches were found, meaning the people who received his organs will have been given a fighting chance at life because of Logan's selfless act. Some of Logan's organs will also be donated to science.
"Even in his eventual passing, he will be a selfless hero," the family said in a statement, and they're right.
Certainly, you never want to think about the possibility that your organs could potentially save someone else's life. We are rather possessive of the organic machines that keep our bodies going, and so for some of us, it's difficult to consider the possibility of organ donation for that time when we might no longer need them. We don't necessarily want to consider a time when we might be kept alive by a machine, where our families are gathered around our prone forms and painful decisions have to be made.
Yet, we can make some decisions easier on them simply by signing up to be an organ or tissue donor at beadonor.ca in Ontario, Canada, or by visiting Life: Pass It On to find out what your province's organ donation registration protocols are. If you live in the United States, you can go to DMV.org and look into the organ donation registration process there. Each state no doubt has its own unique requirements as to how to register to be an organ donor, but we all have to start somewhere.
In Logan Boulet's case, at least six people are going to be helped from his selflessness. Logan was 21, and the fact that he signed his organ donor card so readily reminds me that not all kids in their early 20s are just "kids;" there are a lot of younger people like Logan Boulet who are making what can be a really tough decision because in the long run, they want to help others.
According to beadonor.ca, "Most major religions support organ and tissue donation because it can save the life of another." There are thousands of individuals praying for a new organ or new tissues because of their various medical conditions, and even with a serious medical condition of your own, there is a possibility you could help by being an organ or tissue donor. In Ontario, at least, the oldest organ donor was 92 while the oldest tissue donor was 104. Those numbers are incredible, and the hope those individuals offered in their selfless act was immeasurable.
It's my hope that all individuals who have been sitting on the fence, trying to decide whether or not to tick off that box on their driver's license - the one saying that you consent to be an organ and/or tissue donor, or words to that effect - will hear about Logan Boulet's story and make the decision to be an organ and tissue donor. Lives depend on people making those choices, and while the decision to be an organ and tissue donor is not an easy one for some, it is incredibly important.
I have no doubt that Logan Boulet's parents and family are incredibly proud of him for making such a selfless decision, and I hope they are seeing the ripple effect that news of his choice is having. In Canada, online registration for organ donation has surged in the wake of the #HumboldtBroncos tragedy, and probably in no small part due to Logan choosing a few weeks ago to be an organ donor.
It's a decision that saves lives.