I'm an Organ Donor... Are You?

Awesome Story! There's also a link on the right side of my blog for the organization, "Triathlons for Transplants."  Check it out!

Dallas Organ Recipient Finishes Ironman Triathlon


David Landsberg, a Health Unit Coordinator at Parkland Hospital lives life with a mission -- to raise awareness about organ donation. Landsberg has been on the other side of the profession, he was born with polycystic kidney disease and waited two years for a kidney transplant.

"I was blessed it was only two years," Landsberg said. "The only thing I know about the donor is he was 6 year old boy (who) died in a car accident."

87,000 Americans are waiting for a kidney. 4,000 will die within the year, according the the American Transplant Association.

"For a horrible thing like that to happen to somebody and for them to have enough love and giving to want to do something to make that tragedy wonderful, like donate the organs," Landsberg said.
Landsberg emerged from transplant surgery healthy and determined. He started running, swimming and biking. In the process, David decided to train for the grueling Ironman triathalon. In November, David competed.

"I don't really know who it was but during the event where there were moments where you wanted to give up and you need a reason to keep going, I was like, 'somebody died and I'm alive for it. I'm going to do everything I can to make this happen and spread the word that organ donors save lives,'" Landsberg said.

David founded The Society for Organ Donor Awareness, or SODA, hoping to get the word out about organ donation. People who work with David at Parkland sing his praises. "It takes an iron man to achieve what he has in his life and he's an inspiration," said Michelle Howard, a Health Unit Coordinator.
David says he is grateful for each day and the little boy who in death, saved his life. "All I can say is thank you from the bottom of my heart. there really aren't words to express gratitude on that level," Landsberg said.


KovasP said...

Organ donation is very cool and that story shows it.

Unknown said...

David Landsberg was very lucky to get a kidney transplant. Over half of the 109,000 Americans on the national waiting list will die before they get a transplant. Most of these deaths are needless. Americans bury or cremate about 20,000 transplantable organs every year. Over 9,000 of their neighbors die every year as a result.

There is a simple way to put a big dent in the organ shortage -- give organs first to people who have agreed to donate their own organs when they die.

Giving organs first to organ donors will convince more people to register as organ donors. It will also make the organ allocation system fairer. People who aren't prepared to share the gift of life should go to the back of the transplant waiting list as long as there is a shortage of organs.

Anyone who wants to donate their organs to others who have agreed to donate theirs can join LifeSharers. LifeSharers is a non-profit network of organ donors who agree to offer their organs first to other organ donors when they die. Membership is free at www.lifesharers.org or by calling 1-888-ORGAN88. There is no age limit, parents can enroll their minor children, and no one is excluded due to any pre-existing medical condition. LifeSharers has over 14,000 members, including 1,158 members in Texas.

David J. Undis
Executive Director

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