Be A Superhero And Become An Organ Donor

Did you ever dream of being a superhero? Chris Kmetz certainly did, as Superman was his idol and role model. As it turned out, though, Chris himself was a superhero all along because of his decision to become an organ donor.

On February 23, Chris, the father of two young children, was driving home from his job as a Boeing analyst when his car flipped and landed in a drainage ditch. Critically injured, Chris spent a week in the hospital, and doctors eventually informed his wife that he wouldn’t recover. That’s when Chris donned his superhero cape. Because he was a registered organ donor, doctors were able to use his kidneys to save two lives.

Registering for organ donation is an opportunity for everyday people to become heroes. According to organdonor.gov, well over 100,000 Americans are waiting for an organ, and over 1,900 of them are children. A new patient joins the waiting list every 10 minutes, and more than 20 people will die waiting for an organ every day. Just a single organ donor can save up to eight lives. Looking at those numbers, you have to wonder why more people don’t register to be donors, but at the same time, hesitation is understandable. Nobody likes to think about dying, especially young, healthy people.

When I registered to be a donor, I almost felt like I was betraying my three children, who were babies and toddlers at the time, simply by acknowledging the fact that I could die any day. But that’s the heart talking, not logic. Most donors die in accidents, and accidents don’t respect age, health, the fact that you have people who love and count on you, or anything else. Accidents that take people’s lives too soon, by nature, are unexpected and unfair. They don’t allow you to wait until you know you’re dying to make a decision about being a donor.

Chris’s eagerness to become an organ donor is what makes him such a hero. He had the courage to face life’s fragility, to stare it in the eye and say, “If tomorrow’s the day I die, I’m going to make a difference. My tragedy is going to be somebody’s miracle.” And that proved to be the case, offering life-saving organs to people he never even met.

Your world is taking applications for superheroes. There are thousands of open positions, and the qualifications are easy. Want to become an organ donor? Just sign up through your state’s registry. Chris did. Will you?

Image source: Flickr