Friday, October 29, 2010


National Donor SabbathNovember 12th, 2010


This November, the New York Alliance for Donation invites religious leaders and congregants in our region’s houses of worship to celebrate the miracle of organ, eye and tissue donation and transplantation, by launching DONOR REGISTRATION DRIVES! Please contact us for sample sermons!

Although all major religions support organ, eye and tissue donation, many individuals do not enroll in the New York State Donate Life Registry; likewise, too many families do not consent, when their loved one has not documented his or her legal wishes, because they believe incorrectly that their religion does not support donation.

The purpose of National Donor Sabbath, a program which is endorsed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is to raise public awareness about transplantation and the critical need for donated organs, eyes and tissues.

Most important, this is the perfect time of the year—as the holiday season approaches—to organize donor registry drives that will restore life and hope in the months and years that lie ahead.

There is a desperate need for organ donors:
The number of candidates waiting for organ transplants across the United States is approaching 110,000.
Of those waiting, nearly 10,000 are in New York State.
Last year, there were just 423 deceased donors in our the entire state of New York.
Meanwhile, across the nation, as many as 18 people die each day because of the shortage of organ donors.
Every 11 minutes, a new name is added to the national organ transplant waiting list.

We therefore urge all houses of worship to encourage greater understanding about organ, eye and tissue donation, and to help to increase enrollments in the
New York State Donate Life Donor Registry.

Whether you are a religious leader or a person of faith who attends your house of worship on a regular basis, your participation in National Donor Sabbath 2010 will demonstrate your support for the patients in New York State who are currently awaiting life-saving organ transplants. And please bear in mind that thousands more need eyes or tissue such as bone, skin and heart-valves.

On this Donor Sabbath, we hope you will help to get the word out about donation. We request that you will help us in our lifesaving and most reverent of missions. The most effective way to do so is to take action, by organizing a New York State Donate Life Registry drive in your house of worship, and in your community.


To find out more about National Donor Sabbath and to order free materials, contact Melanie Evans at 518-533-7878 ext 2 or e-mail her at



GCLA white on black logo 2
L.A'.s premier culinary extravaganza is only 9 DAYS AWAY!
Purchase your tickets NOW before they sell out!!

The Draw
Whether you're a food TV junkie or a food enthusiast whose dining to-dos are never done this event will satisfy your cravings.  Mix and mange and get your fill of celebrity chefs, food trucks, boutique wines, top shelf spirits and tap into craft brews in the "Beer Chick's" Beer Garden where Beer Sommelier Christina Perozzi will pour a plenty while you bid on one of the exclusive gift baskets at the Live and Silent Auctions put together specifically for The Great Chefs of Los Angeles "Go Green Go Organic" event!!

GCLA pic 2

The Chefs

Taking center stage to host this year's event are Top Chef's
Stefan Richter (Stefan's at LA Farm) and The Stiletto Chef,Candice Kumai of Lifetime's  "Cook Yourself Thin," who joins Chef of Honor Jimmy Shaw (Loteria) in the celebration of LA's top tastemakers (visit www.kidneysocal.orgfor a full line-up of Great Chefs 2010).

GCLA pic 3

Go Green

Relax in 944's "Get Hip Get Green" Lounge, outfitted with environmentally friendly furniture by Girari Sustainable Furnishing, while consciously sipping VeeV Acai Spirit's socially responsible cocktails at the "Go Green Go Organic" Spirits Bar.  Walk away from the event with a Get Hip Get Green gift bag (valued at $350!) stuffed to the brim with GCLA Swag. 

Here's the Dish
Sunday, November 7
12 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
On the backlot of CBS Studio Center 4024 Radford Dr. in Studio City
Tickets are $150
Buy them online
Fan and follow GCLA for exclusive ticket offers: on FACEBOOK andTWITTER
All guests take home a Get Hip Get Green's reusable totes stuffed full of beauty and body goods ($350 worth!), edible and otherwise indulgent.

Jimmy Shaw headshot
Chef of Honor Jimmy Shaw(Loteria)

Go Green Go Organic Hostess, Candice Kumai ofLifetimes "Cook Yourself Thin," TLC's "Home Made Simple," and The Cooking Channel's "Unique Eats"

Stefan Richter Official Headshot
Host Chef Stefan Richter(Stefan's at LA Farm)


50th Anniversary of the First UK Live Donor Kidney Transplant

Source: Allmedia Scotland

One of the UK’s first transplant patients returned to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh this week to mark the 50th anniversary of the lifesaving surgery.
Linda Phillips, who was just nine-years-old when she underwent the procedure, marked the major medical milestone with NHS Lothian and Edinburgh University.
The 53-year-old met up with clinicians past and present to remember the breakthrough operation which earned the RIE a place in history.
She said: “It is really important to mark the anniversary because that operation has helped change so many lives, including mine. Without it, they would not have been able to continue progressing and I wouldn’t be here today.”
Identical twins Lewis and Martin Abbott, 49, underwent the first procedure of its kind in Britain on October 30th 1960.
Martin agreed to donate an organ to his brother who had been diagnosed with irreversible kidney failure.
The pair along with the late lead surgeon Professor Michael Woodruff and his dedicated team, including senior registrar at the time Dr Bernard Nolan, changed the face of modern medicine.
Dr Nolan carried the organ from the donor into the neighbouring theatre and then assisted Professor Woodruff to perform the transplant procedure.
He said: “It was a truly memorable day. We had the entire unit to ourselves. I assisted with the first operation to remove the kidney from the donor and then had the task of carrying it through to the recipient before I assisted Professor Woodruff with the second operation on the recipient.
“It was probably one of the most rewarding experiences of my life watching the recipient grow back to full strength.”
The operation was hailed a huge success across the UK and the twins returned to their normal lives within weeks. They lived for six years before they died from unrelated disease.
Dr Anne Lambie, who was a lecturer in therapeutics at the time and helped with the pre-operative treatment of the recipient, said: “The operation was the beginning of things to come and it was very exciting for all of us to be involved.
“It was a breakthrough. The team was the first to perform the procedure in the UK and it was fascinating for us to watch Lewis get better and be given his life back, although he seemed to take it all in his stride.”
The operation started a new chapter in transplant medicine and within a year the second operation had taken place.
Between October 1960 and December 1974, 127 patients had undergone a renal transplant. By 1981, more than 100 of the patients still survived at a time when kidney failure treatment was nowhere near as advanced as today and many patients died.
The 50th anniversary comes as NHS Lothian launches its own campaign to increase the number of registered organ donors in Lothian.
The health board is teaming up with big businesses, organisations, colleges and universities to encourage more people to join “Sign up and save a life”.
A dedicated website has been created and donors can also join up by texting “fifty” on their mobile phone to number 61611.
Consultant transplant surgeon John Forsythe, of the Transplant Unit at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh and national lead transplant surgeon, said the 50th anniversary was an ideal opportunity to raise awareness of organ donation.
He added: “This is a vitally important date in Scottish and UK history because it marked a brand new era in medicine.
“The bravery of the twins and the work of Woodruff and his team showed that we could overcome the surgical problems of transplant and since then we have gradually overcome many of the problems of rejection.This means that transplant is now one of the most successful modern procedures
“Since that first operation, there have been further significant medical advances. We can transplant between people who do not have good tissue matching, such as spouse to spouse or “stranger” donation. The donor operation has also changed completely and now most kidneys are removed by “keyhole surgery”.
Cabinet Secretary Nicola Sturgeon urged more people to remember the anniversary by joining the register.
She said: “Transplants transform lives and it’s amazing how far the procedures have advanced in the 50 years since these pioneering operations were carried out in Edinburgh.
“Many people have huge reason to be grateful for the skill and vision of these early surgeons, as well as the bravery of their patients. But the reality is that many more lives could be saved if more organs were available. That’s why I would urge everyone to sign up to the organ donor register, if they haven’t already done so. It only takes a second, but it could save a life.”


Advocate Condell nurse cited for organ donation efforts

LIBERTYVILLE — A Lake Villa nurse has received regional honors for her efforts to facilitate organ donation and transplantation.
Advocate Condell Medical Center nurse Raeann Fuller, RN, CCRN, CNML, has been selected as a regional champion by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network.
Fuller, 53, is the nurse manager in Condell’s Intensive Care Unit. She was chosen from a five-state region.
“I was really surprised and taken aback when I heard the news,” Fuller said. “I’m not doing anything more than what’s expected.”
A nurse for 33 years, and a tissue recipient herself, Fuller said she can’t take full credit for the recognition. “This was not accomplished alone,” Fuller said. I appreciate the honor but it reflects the dedication and work of so many people on our staff. Everybody gets the credit for this.”
Condell has facilitated eight donations so far this year. The hospital raises an honorary flag every time an organ donation occurs. It has facilitated more than 60 organ donations since 2005 and was recognized during a visit by Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White last April.
Advocate Condell Medical Center partners with the Itasca-based, Gift of Hope Organ and Tissue Donor Network. Officials there say nearly 5,000 of the 108,000 people waiting for organs, are from Illinois. Every 13 minutes, another person is added to the national list. An average of 18 people will die each day waiting.
Gift of Hope Hospital Development Coordinator Debbie De Vito says Fuller is uniquely qualified.
“Everyone knows that Raeann and Advocate Condell are best practice,” De Vito said. “She does a great job educating her staff, and working with families.”
De Vito said that for each person who donates, as many as 25 lives can be saved. The most common donated organs are kidneys. Other organs include heart, lungs, pancreas, and small bowel.
Advocate Condell Vice President Patient Care, Mary Hillard, RN, MSN said Fuller is graceful in some of the most difficult situations.
“We get so many letters and comments from patients and families who have been touched by Raeanne’s compassion and empathy,” Hillard said. “She operates with skill and grace and helps families understand they are giving life to someone else through the donation. Raeanne is an asset to Condell and the community.”

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Gift of Life MOTTEP is joining with Triumph Church in Detroit to present a FREE concert called "Sounds of Saving Lives" at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, November 14, in honor of National Donor Sabbath. For full details, check out the flyer:


Chef Henry In Spotlight After ‘Nightline’ Win
ANDREW NELSON, Staff Writer | The Georgia Bulletin

ACWORTH—The upbeat zydeco music at Henry’s Louisiana Grill greets visitors before stepping into the restaurant. A basketful of Mardi Gras beads are there for the taking. A shrine to Louisiana State University football and the New Orleans Saints covers one wall. And hanging on another is a crucifix.

A bustling restaurant in the charming center of the city, the chef and restaurant’s namesake is Henry Chandler III, an upbeat, friendly, shaggy-haired chef.

The 10-year-old restaurant, at 4835 N. Main St., recently earned national recognition when it won the People’s Platelist contest by getting more than 10,000 online votes.

It started with more than 1,000 people nominating a local chef for the “Nightline” People’s Platelist contest. The entries were narrowed to 20 finalists. Then the polls were opened for an online popularity contest. The chef earning the top votes from viewers earned a spot on national television. The contest was hosted by ABC’s “Nightline” show.

“We worked very hard for it,” Chandler said. “I closed my eyes and held my breath” the night of the announcement, he said.

Since the news broke in early October, folks have streamed into the place.

“It’s not how many customers come through the door. It’s how many come back,” said Chandler, who has on pants decorated with colorful peppers and beads around his neck. He sipped a cup of espresso with milk.

Chandler grew up on a cotton, cattle and pecan plantation in rural Saint Maurice, La. It was there that he learned to cook, paying attention to his nanny, Castelle.

He called his mother a “Southern belle,” who left it to Castelle to care for him and his siblings. And it was Castelle who showed him how to cook. His first meal was dumplings for workers on his father’s farm.

Later at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Chandler had more of an appreciation for good times than studies. Chandler admits he spent too much of his time at college partying before he found himself working on an oil rig some 120 miles offshore at his father’s insistence.

His formal training in the kitchen came in Europe, working beside master chefs in London. The jobs were really starting at the “armpit of the kitchen,” he said.

The hard work paid off, when he returned to Georgia to work as a corporate chef.

After awhile of working for others, Chandler and his wife, Claudia, got the idea to strike out on their own. In 2000, he opened a 45-seat restaurant. Six years later, he moved to this 175-seat restaurant on the corner of Dallas and N. Main streets, where he has a habit of visiting the dining room to make sure guests are happy.

The “Louisiana Ooh La La!” is his signature dish. He called it a “rich, thick, Cajun alfredo” with spicy ham, roasted garlic, flash fried seafood.

“I only give away part of the recipe,” he said.

Chandler said a customer once told him, “Henry’s food is like having Mardi Gras in your mouth.”

His Catholic faith plays a big part in his life. His children, son Liam (whose given name is William Chandler IV) and daughter Danielle Grace, attend St. Catherine of Siena School and Blessed Trinity High School, respectively.

A prayer before meals is common when the family eats breakfast. That’s when the family catches up since the restaurant demands his evening time. The family sets aside time to pray a rosary together.

“Without faith, what are we here for?” Chandler asks.

The family attends St. Catherine of Siena Church, Kennesaw, where Chandler’s wife is a lay minister.

“I’ve been sitting in the same spot for 21 years. I don’t like anyone taking my spot,” said Chandler.

Parents need to teach their children the faith, Chandler said. He compared it to a chef passing on a valuable recipe to a young person learning to cook.

Another passion of his is organ donation. Chandler likes to say he is “51 years old with a 22-year-old liver.” In 2007, exhaustion was wearing him out. A routine doctor’s appointment found he had liver cancer with just months to live.

Experimental drugs and prayers weren’t reversing the cancer. His situation worsened. Death seemed imminent as a search for a new liver continued. He received last rites of the church.

A liver was finally found from a young person.

Now, he advocates and raises money for organ donation programs. He carries organ donor cards in his wallet to hand out. April is Donate Life Month and it is a big deal here. The restaurant in 2009 signed up 20 new organ donors and he has a goal for 2011 of 100.

There is a fun spirit in the restaurant. It is a crowd pleaser and an inportant specialty of Chandler’s grill. You can see the TV show featuring Chef Henry online at:

“We started out with nothing and this is where we’ve come,” Chandler said.


There are 108,000 Reasons To Consider Organ Donation
by By Wayne Allen Wallen@
According to Lifeline of Ohio there are 108,000 people currently on the national registry waiting for organ donation.

"The importance of organ donation is huge. There are more than 108,000 Americans waiting for a transplant. In 2009 that number was closer 100,000, so the need continues to rise," Rachel Lewis, Media Relations/Community Outreach Coordinator for Lifeline of Ohio said. "The said fact is that 18 Americans die everyday waiting for a transplant."

Lewis said in Ohio over 3,000 people are waiting for a transplant.

"I run into people who have never really thought about organ donation. Until it touches our lives it's (organ donation) not always something we think about," Lewis said. "There are so many people waiting and sadly so many people dyeing because there are not enough donors that it's worth taking the time to think about and learning about donation."

She said Lifeline of Ohio has a number of resources on its website to inform interested parties about the importance of organ donation.

"By taking five minutes to learn about donation and signup as a donor you could potentially save eight lives through organ donation and enhance 50 lives through tissue donation," Lewis said. "You have the power to leave an amazing legacy, just by taking the time to be informed about organ donation."

She says there are a number of myths and misconceptions about organ donation. "The number one myth that we here and the biggest barrier to donation is the fear that, doctors might let me go before my time if I am a registered donor. That myth is completely untrue," Lewis said. "We believe what we see on T.V. You are watching prime time television and the same doctor in the E.R. then does the recovery, and then does the transplantation. That's not the way it happens in real life. Unless you've had experience with that you might think that a doctor in the E.R. is concerned about your status as a donor and they are not."

Lifeline of Ohio does there best to connect with people throughout 37 counties in Ohio and two in West Virginia.

"We (Lifeline of Ohio) have free presentations and materials for anyone that's interested. We are coming up on National Donor Sabbath, which is November 12-14th," Lewis said. "National Donor Sabbath, is a time for faith based organizations to declare their support of donation. Another big myth is that people fear that there religion does not support organ donation. All major religions in the U.S. do support it."

She said Lifeline can provide speakers for events and meetings along with materials.

According to Lifeline of Ohio, in the past four years, 52.8 percent of license and state I.D. holders in Ohio have registered as donors, compared to 38.2 percent in Scioto County.

For more information about Lifeline of Ohio, visit


Cycling: Foster selected for Great Britain squad

Source: This is Staffordshire

BRITISH silver medal cyclist Chris Foster has been selected to represent Great Britain at next year's World Transplant Games in Sweden.

Foster won two silvers at the British Transplant Games earlier this year in the 5km time trial and 10km scratch.

The 39-year-old, from Congleton, has battled back to health after being diagnosed with kidney failure in 2001 after suffering a throat infection. He underwent dialysis treatment for two years before his dad, Bob, was found to be a donor match and a successful transplant was carried out in 2003.

Now Foster, a scientific engineer, is aiming for more medals when he competes in the World Games in Gothenburg between June 17 and 24 next year.

"I entered the British games just to see how I'd get on," said Foster, who rides for Congleton Cycling Club.

"So to win two medals was more than I'd hoped for.

"It helped me to get recognised and was one of the reasons why I've been selected for the event in Sweden.

"I'm excited to go, but it's going to be extremely competitive. Realistically, I'm quite a way off gold pace.

"I've got a hard winter of training ahead to get anywhere near challenging for a medal."

The purpose of the games is to demonstrate the benefits of successful organ transplantation, increase public awareness of donations and promote the full rehabilitation of the participants.

Foster, a former motorbike racer, has been told he will need to raise a minimum of £1,200 to go to the event.

He added: "The money covers travel, accommodation, equipment and kit.

"I'm training at Manchester Velodrome twice a week, and doing four-hour mountain bike rides at weekends. That will change and get more intense towards the event distances, which are going to be confirmed next year.

"I hope to combine my training with sponsored events, and I'll have to make up any shortfall myself."

Anyone who may be able to help Foster out with sponsorship should visit

FORMER British road race champion Steve Joughin will be at Brian Rourke Cycles, in Burslem, next month to sign copies of his autobiography.

The 51-year-old, from Lightwood, earned the nickname 'Pocket Rocket' after carving out a successful cycling career.

Originally from the Isle of Man, Joughin moved to England as a youngster to advance his cycling career.

Joughin's book is an honest assessment of the difficulties he faced, how he turned to drink when his career was ended, to the more positive days of become a cycling champion.

Joughin will be at Brian Rourke Cycles on November 6 between 9am and noon.

His book can be purchased at Waterstone's in Hanley, priced £8.99.


Kidney Health New Zealand welcomes new TV series
Tuesday, 26 October 2010, 1:13 pm
Press Release: Kidney Foundation

Media Release

October 26 2010

Kidney Health New Zealand welcomes new TV series about organ donation and transplantation

“With over 500 people with kidney failure on the waiting list for transplants, Kidney Health New Zealand congratulates TVNZ for its decision to air the new TV series Situation Critical in primetime”, says KHNZ Chair Dave Henderson.

“Many New Zealanders are in need of donated organs, not just kidneys, and we also congratulate Organ Donation New Zealand for its contribution to the programme.”

Professor Kelvin Lynn, Medical Director of Kidney Health New Zealand, says “This TV series will enhance the community’s awareness of the benefits of organ donation.”

“At the end of 2009, there were 2,260 people on kidney dialysis in New Zealand. During 2009, there were 54 kidney transplants from deceased donors and 67 from live donors. Waiting times for a deceased donor transplant average three to five years”, said Professor Lynn.

In order to increase the present low rate of deceased donor organ donation, Kidney Health New Zealand encourages people to make a decision about whether their organs can be donated in the event of their death and, importantly, to discuss this with their family/whanau.

Please visit Kidney Health New Zealand to learn more

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Donor lungs - the long wait

A campaign to recruit potential organ donors has just been held in the Netherlands; its slogan: 'organ donation, yes or no?' For Monique Goewie (37) that's a question of life and death, because she has cystic fibrosis. The disease is now so advanced that she's been at the head of the queue for a lung transplant for quite some time.


Her own lungs are in such bad shape that she now lives in hospital. Actually she's waiting in hospital, her life on hold, as it were. Having spent three years on the list as a 'highly urgent case', it's been a long wait - extremely long. And now time could be running out.


Michigan beating OSU in organ donor challenge

By Sarah Pfleddrer | The Lantern

The Buckeyes have been undefeated against Michigan on the field for the past six years. But if the annual Buckeye-Wolverine Challenge for Life ended today, Ohio State would lose.

The Buckeye-Wolverine Challenge for Life between OSU and the University of Michigan began in 2006. It challenges the schools to register as many new organ, eye and tissue donors as they can before the rivalry commences on the field.

OSU has crushed the Wolverines the past four years, but this year, Michigan is leading by nearly 16,000 new registered donors.

Prospective Ohio donors can register to score a point for the Buckeyes online at, request a mail-in brochure by calling 800-525-5667, or say "yes" to organ and tissue donation when renewing a license or state I.D., said Rachel Lewis, community outreach director of Lifeline of Ohio.

Coach Jim Tressel said, "More than 105,000 fans fill Ohio Stadium and more than that number of Americans are waiting right now for a life saving organ transplant," according to the Buckeye-Wolverine Challenge for Life website.

More than 109,000 people are on the waiting list for transplantation, and an Ohioan dies waiting once every 48 hours, according to Lifeline of Ohio.

Matt Scroggy, a third-year in the Doctor of Pharmacy Program at OSU, received a kidney transplant from his older sister Sarah in 2009.

Scroggy's wait time of six months was shorter than most, he said, because "not everyone is as fortunate to have a living donor step up for them as I was."

Without the transplant, he would not have been able to continue his education at OSU, participate in the 2010 U.S. Transplant Games in Madison, Wis., or above all, stay alive, Scroggy said.

The U.S. Transplant Games are Olympic-style competitions for transplant recipients and donors. Scroggy won a bronze medal in the 5K road race and 4x400-meter relay and a silver in racquetball and the 800m.

The purpose of the Transplant Games is to "show people organ and tissue donation works," said Ryan Zinn, OSU alumnus and interim director of Technology Licensing and Commercialization.

Zinn received a heart transplant in 1988 during his sophomore year of high school.

"I was told to prepare to live six months or wait for a transplant," Zinn said.

Like Scroggy, Zinn had a shorter wait for his transplant compared to many, as he received a heart from an anonymous donor three weeks after being put on the transplant list. He later discovered his donor was a 20-year-old who was in a local auto accident.

Zinn said he still writes thank-you letters to his donor's family.

Lewis said Zinn is becoming a "famous face" at the U.S. and International Transplant Games.

Zinn specializes in sprinting events and has competed in the competition since 1992, winning more than 35 medals and running in two Olympic Torch Relays. He recently competed at the International Transplant Games in Gold Coast, Australia, and will travel to Sweden next year to compete in the World Transplant Games.

Transplantation "is an opportunity to leave a legacy by saving or enhancing the lives of others," Zinn said. "I'm not gonna take (my organs) with me, so if anyone else can use them, then more power to them."

Scroggy expressed similar sentiments.

"Helping to continue the life of another person after my death by donating my organs is one of the greatest gifts a person can give," he said.

A single donor can save the lives of eight people and enhance the lives of 50 others by donating organs and tissues, according to Lifeline of Ohio.

Zinn and Scroggy both registered as organ, eye and tissue donors when they received their licenses.

Although the Buckeye-Wolverine Challenge for Life tallies only the number of newly registered donors before Nov. 25, Lewis said registered donors can participate by encouraging their peers and family members to register.

The Wolverines are pushing harder than OSU because they are tired of losing, Lewis said. She said she expects more promotional events closer to the big game.

"The bottom line is lives are being saved," she said.

Numbers are updated daily and can be viewed at


Students dance for organ donation
By Richard A. Marini - Express-News

A “flash mob” of students from Northwest Vista College danced to cumbia-infused techno music Tuesday to motivate fellow students to sign up to be registered organ donors.

The attention-getting affair was part of a new “Save 8” campaign by the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance. It was designed to highlight the fact that one person can save up to eight lives by becoming an organ donor.

In Texas alone, more than 10,000 people are waiting for an organ transplant. TOSA hopes to enroll an additional 500,000 donors to its organ registry in South and Central Texas by 2011.

In addition to events such as the flash mob — which were previously held at the University of Texas-Pan Am and Laredo Community College — TOSA has turned to social media to get the word out. These efforts include accounts on YouTube (, Facebook ( and Twitter (@save8texas).

Below is Save8 Flash Mob from McAllen, Texas.



Vital Alliance 13th Annual Donate Life Run/Walk

"Vital Alliance 13th Annual Donate Life Run/Walk"
Brackenridge Park - Joske Pavillion

NOVEMBER 20, 2010




5K Runners-$20.00 - 5K Walkers-$15.00 - Teams- $10.00 per person (5 or more team members required and only walkers)
Free Kids Fun Run!!!

All pre-registration participants receive a t-shirt, except child runners who receive a ribbon. Medals awarded to top three male and female runners in all age groups and overall male and female.
$5 race day late registration fee added.


‘Walk for Life’ seeking sponsors, supporters

Published October 27, 2010

SEGUIN — Cliff and Marcy Letbetter are becoming walkers.

They walk for two reasons: their health — and to promote organ donation.

And on Saturday, Nov. 13, the Letbetters and the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance invite Seguin residents out to Texas Lutheran University’s walking track for an event they hope will raise awareness around Guadalupe County about the need for donating organs to save lives.

That’s because Cliff Letbetter is only alive because nearly five years ago, the family of a North Texas man named Dan — nicknamed “Snake” — died of an aneurism, and the man’s family donated his organs, among them the heart that now keeps Letbetter alive.

Registration for the first Seguin “Walk For Life” begins at the Texas Lutheran University walking track on the corner of Kingsbury and Flemming streets at 7 a.m. The walk begins at 8 a.m. Water, fruit and healthy snacks will be available. Registration fee, which includes a commemorative T-shirt, is $10. Sponsors to help the Letbetters cover the costs of the event are still being sought. Those who sign on by Friday will have their names or corporate logos displayed on the shirts.

The Letbetters attended a similar walk in Del Rio a while ago and were so impressed they decided there should be one in Seguin to raise awareness of the need for transplant donors and encourage members of the community to become organ donors.

Each year, said Cliff Letbetter, 108,500 people wait for transplantable organs around the United States — 10,200 of them in Texas.

Each day, 18 people on the national list die for want of a donor heart, liver, kidney or other organ, and every 12 minutes, a new name is added to the waiting list.

The Letbetters learned firsthand how serious the problem is, and have a formed a non-profit to help spread the word.

“The show of support in the Del Rio community was unbelievable, and it was a great opportunity to meet transplant recipients and donor families,” he said. “We hadn’t gotten 10 miles out-of-town before we said, ‘We have to do this at home in Seguin.’”

The Letbetters know a few transplant recipients and a few donor families, and all are invited to the walk, he said — whether able to walk or not.

“Anyone who registers will get a T-shirt,” he said. “We’re not establishing any particular length. Those who can make a few laps around the track are encouraged to do so. If you can’t, it’s time to quit, bring a lawn chair, enjoy the day and support the cause.”

Any transplant recipients who inform the Letbetters in advance that they’ll be attending will get a special shirt.

“We’d like to hear from any recipient who would like to come out and be involved,” Marcy Letbetter said. “They don’t have to walk — bring a comfortable chair!”

Sponsor donations to cover the costs of the walk and the T-shirts begin at $25. Each sponsor who signs on by Friday will be included on the Walk For Life T-shirt. Sponsors can be individuals, non-profits or businesses, he said. Sponsors at higher levels will get free T-shirts.

The Letbetters hope the walk becomes an annual event like fundraisers for other causes.

“We have the cancer fundraisers — and we support them — but we don’t have anything like this in Seguin,” Marcy said. “In April, which is National Donate Life Month, people are encouraged to think about donating their organs. We wanted something to keep awareness going at other times.”

Her husband agreed.

“It wasn’t National Donate Life Month when I got my heart,” he said. “We’re looking to increase awareness, and hope to have the support of the community.”

The Letbetters want to meet Guadalupe County residents who have a connection to organ donation, either as recipients like Cliff or as donors or surviving members of donor families, and he’s contacted the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance, which supports a walk here.

Esmeralda “Mela” Perez, TOSA manager of communications and community development, believes it’s a wonderful idea.

“Mr. and Mrs. Letbetter have worked on the idea for months,” Perez said. “We’re excited to see they’ve started a “Friends For Life-Seguin.”

A walk supporting organ donation would be a great grassroots effort to raise awareness in the Guadalupe County community, Perez said.

“We’ll start small and build on it,” Perez said.

That will be just fine with Cliff Letbetter.

“Transplant recipients and donor families are a small community and a tight-knit group,” he said. “When one of us is sick, we hear about it. When one of us dies, everybody seems to know it. We know there are recipients, and donor families as well, in Guadalupe County, and we’d like to meet them at the Walk For Life.”

Friends For Life-Seguin is looking for members, entrants, sponsors and volunteers for its first-ever “Walk For Life” to be conducted Saturday, Nov. 13 at Texas Lutheran University. For information, contact Mela Perez at the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance at 1-866-685-0277 or Marcy Letbetter at 830-708-3312 or by e-mail at cmletbetter1987(at) Mail donations to Friends For Life-Seguin, 670 Lange Rd., Seguin, 78155.
Friends For Life-Seguin is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. Donations are tax deductible.