New Hopes 2016
With the stroke of midnight, almost every new year starts with new resolutions. Resolution lists are filled with weight loss goals, travel adventures and ideas of reevaluating life’s choices. But have you ever spoken to someone who said his or her resolution is to get a second chance at life?
“I would not have been able to hold hands and walk in the restaurant with my wife,” said Ron Harbour, LifeGift Ambassador of Hope. He received a lifesaving heart transplant one year ago. During a presentation to LifeGift staff in Houston, appropriately called New Hopes 2016, Ron poured out his heart in thanks to LifeGift staff, candidly admitting his road to recovery depended solely on hope.
LifeGift employees share a unique opportunity. We offer hope. We are the light in the darkness. In each unique role, we have the opportunity to turn the bad into the good. As we approach families, we carry hope with us like a constant friend.
“Remember my mother when you’re working with a potential donor family, “said Dr. Casey Patrick, LifeGift Ambassador of Hope, who lost his mother because she did not receive a lifesaving liver in time. “She represented those who are waiting for that lifesaving call.”
Each flight, phone call, meeting and conversation has a ripple effect. Laura Theis, kidney recipient and LifeGift Ambassador of Hope, showed off her Transplant Games 2014 medals to the room of LifeGift staff, and we marveled at her accomplishments because we witnessed LIFE.
“Last year, I celebrated 10 years post-transplant,” said Laura. “I’m just so thankful for everyone in this room because without you and my donor hero I would not be here today.”
Robert Boudwin, LifeGift board member and Houston Rockets mascot "Clutch," brought the New Hopes presentation to a close with a vibrant speech encouraging staff to never give up. When staff sees Robert in the hallways or on the Rockets' basketball court, we know he bears more than a big, red, cute mascot outfit. He bears the passion that so many people have for organ, eye and tissue donation because Ian Heidemann, a young man from Fort Worth who registered as a donor, saved his father's life.
"It was the most profound moment of my life,” Robert said. “The Heidemanns were the most gracious people I’ve ever met, especially due to the circumstances."
Resolution is defined as a firm decision to do or not to do something. New Hopes 2016 gives each one of us a unique chance to make a difference in the lives of others and create a ripple effect that touches countless lives. And the ripple effect starts with one phone call, one conversation and one “YES.”