Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The Gift of Sight - Donor Quilt Dedication

The Monday after we moved into the new house I went to get my FL drivers license. My sense of urgency fueled by the loss of my GA drivers license & the title company needing a copy ASAP! When I sat down to wait for my license to be printed there was a Florida Eye Bank banner hanging directly in front of me that had information regarding donating corneas.
A few days later at our nieces birthday party my Bonus Mom showed me an invitation she had received for us to attend a quilt dedication in honor of the donors.

My dad had cancer, which returned with a vengence very quickly resulting in his sudden death earlier this year. Because of the cancer his organs could not be donated but his corneas could. There was no doubt in any of our minds that Dad would want to give something, so his corneas it was.

Sunday my Bonus Mom & I attended The Gift of Sight Donor Quilt Dedication. My sister couldn't make it because my nephew was having surgery the next day.
The families of those whose loved ones donated corneas when they died were invited & encouraged to create a square for the quilt. 
The dedication ceremony brought together donor families, recipients & recipient families along with the areas cornea transplant doctors. 
Donor families shared stories about their loved ones. Recipients & recipient families shared about how their lives were transformed. The founder of the Florida Eye Bank shared about how he came to start the business of banking corneas & the doctor shared his love of helping people see, sometimes for the first time in their lives.
It was a special but emotional day. At the end it felt good to know that in our hardest hour, losing my dad, actually helped someone by giving them the gift of sight.

Our piece for the quilt, of course my dad's grandchildren were his pride & joy. My dad also worked for Orange County for 30 years (in addition to the 8 years he worked for Manatee County)

The quilt that was unveiled from last years donor families

All the pieces that were donated by this years donor families

We will be invited again next year to see the result of this years contributed quilt pieces.

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