Sunday, December 31, 2006

Ontario donor father to ride on
Donate Life float in 2007 Rose Parade
Monday, January 1st

Donate Life FloatOn New Year's Day be sure to turn on your TV to watch the Rose Parade and keep an eye out for the Donate Life Float themed "Giving From the Heart". This year a Canadian donor father, Emile Therien, will ride on the float thanks to the sponsorship of Trillium Gift of Life Network

The 118th Rose parade themed Our Good Nature, will take place on Monday, January 1, 2007 at 8:00 a.m. (PST) featuring spirited marching bands from throughout the nation, majestic floral floats, and high-stepping equestrian units. Tournament of Roses Home Page

Every Rose Parade float is assembled by volunteers who enjoy bringing the floats to life, but only one float attracts nearly 1,000 volunteers from across California and the U.S. with its mission to inspire people to donate life through organ, tissue and blood donation: the 2007 Donate Life Rose Parade Float, Giving from the Heart.

Beginning Sun., Dec. 3, volunteers who vied for the opportunity to decorate this unique float came together every weekend and throughout the last week of December to ensure that Giving from the Heart is ready to carry its precious human cargo – 23 riders from 11 states and Canada who are all living donors or donor family members.

LOS ANGELES, CA, October 2, 2006 – They gave the ultimate gift – the gift of life – and now their good nature will encourage millions worldwide to follow their example as they ride the Donate Life float down Colorado Boulevard in this year’s Tournament of Roses Parade®. Twenty-three living donors and donor family members from 11 states and Canada will ride on Donate Life’s float, Giving From The Heart, to inspire people to save lives as organ, tissue, and blood donors.

The 2007 Rose Parade signifies an important first for the Donate Life float as all riders will be living donors or donor family members, with the float’s theme bringing to life the good nature of all organ, tissue and blood donors. read the full press release

Earlier this year, Emile Therien's daughter Sarah Beth ushered a new era of organ donation in Canada when she became the nation's first organ donor after cardiac death. Says Emile, "She was a generous, compassionate, beautiful human being and she’d been very clear that if she were gone, she would want someone else to live."

Emile and Sarah Beth's Story

Emile and Beth Therien wanted to honor their 32-year old daughter’s wishes to become an organ donor after a sudden illness hospitalized her and placed her on life support. It was after the family made the decision to withdraw life support on June 17, 2006, that they approached the healthcare team with Sarah Beth’s wishes to become an organ donor. Sarah Beth Therien ushered in a new era when she became the first organ donor after cardiac death in Canada.

“Sarah Beth wanted to be an organ donor,” says Emile. “We had talked about it only days earlier in a completely unrelated way. She was a generous, compassionate, beautiful human being and she’d been very clear that if she were gone, she would want someone else to live. We had to make this happen.”

Up to that point, individuals who died from cardiac death in Canada were considered potential tissue donors only. Organ donation was possible only if a patient were declared brain dead. Although Sarah Beth did not meet this criterion, her family was determined to fulfill her wishes. The Theriens and their son Christopher inquired about and pushed for other options for organ donation.

Their efforts brought about a conversation with a Trillium Gift of Life Network coordinator at The Ottawa Hospital who had received training on donation after cardiac death (DCD). The coordinator approached the healthcare team and hospital administrators to assist this family in fulfilling their donation wishes. read the full story

1 comment:

Merv Sheppard said...

I watched the parade and Emile Therien was front and center on the float, wearing a white Canada jacket with a green ribbon pinned on. Many of the riders were holding framed photos of their loved ones and it was an emotional and moving experience for me. Merv.