A Gift of Life

Hi Stacey,

We went camping this past weekend–you know how we rough it.’We had a campsite right on the river and saw many pods of dolphin. We also saw some manatee. The river was a wonderful 72 degrees. It was a fun time with Sherry and her family. The girls got a National Parks Monopoly game at Mammoth Cave when we were on our way home from Kentucky and we had fun with that. Bonnieli went to jail nearly every time she passed that space. It was almost impossible to land on it so much. She was a good sport about it, but as a result of spending most of the game in jail she didn’t end up with any property or money. In this game, you put up tents instead of houses, and get ranger stations instead of hotels.

You won’t believe this, but when we checked in upon arriving at the campground there was a woman wearing a Lewisville, Looievile, etc. t-shirt. and another woman in the office had a green donate life bracelet. Of course, that started quite a conversation. The woman with the bracelet was the mother of an organ donor. Her son was 16 years old and a website is set up for him and his organ recipients (www.agiftoflife.org) The mother’s name is Candy Heaper. She was at the Transplant Games, and is already planning her trip to Pittsburgh in 2008. She is saving $$ for the trip. She has a jar in her house that people have to put their change in when they visit. She said if they don’t have any change, they have to put in a dollar. Hmm, creative fund raising. She has met 5 of the organ recipients and said it has been very helpful for her healing process. I talked of you, of course, and told her that you hadn’t met your donor family yet and her advice is that you should do it.

I told her about the photos of you with your guardian angel. She said she has a picture of her son with the light on his shoulder. He was sitting at a table with the blind closed and the light came through the blind. She said she took her daughter’s picture on the same chair, same blind closed and there was no light.

I keep missing your phone calls, but I re-play your voice messages again and again just to hear you.

Didn’t we have an awesome time in Kentucky’ That was really special. All those cousins!! It is too bad you didn’t have time to hike the trails. Sherry, the girls and I couldn’t get enough of the hiking. Well, one trip we could have skipped…the one where Sherry and I got totally lost, and soaking wet in the downpour. That didn’t stop us, however, we even did more trails at Mammoth Cave. You will see some of the trail photos when I get all my pictures over to the Kodak Gallery.

Love you, Auntie Marion