Organ gifts

This is an archived article that was published on in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The new year is for new beginnings and the end of old ideas. I hope it ends the wait for so many children who need life-saving organs. I know one 4-year-old who has been waiting for a new heart for more than 280 days, 190 in the hospital.

Viable child donors are lost because distraught parents say "no" to organ donations. Sadly, these families are forced to make a critical decision at the worst time in their lives.

They might mistakenly think that they can't have an open-casket funeral, or that their child's life isn't valued if they're a donor. If they had learned the facts before tragedy struck, something positive could have come from losing their child. What an incredible legacy!

I went to and signed up all of my family to be donors. For me, it is legally binding; for my children, it is merely proof of my wishes.

Make a New Year's resolution to let your extended family know how you feel. There are 400 Utahns, including around 25 children, who will thank you.

Hilary Thompson