Nervous mom honors her late daughter — and saves lives

Detroit News | Neal Rubin

The Gift of Life MOTTEP LIFE Walk/Run last year. The 18th annual event will be Saturday on Belle Isle. (Photo: Johnny Northern)

Artelia Griggs found herself somewhere she never expected to be a few mornings ago: on camera in a TV studio, trying not to show how jittery she was.

Another place she never expected to be: a series of Secretary of State offices, approaching strangers to talk about donating their organs.

She owes both of those experiences to her daughter. Or really, the memory of her daughter. And though they’ll never know it, a lot of people might owe something to the both of them.

Since Angela Griggs died in late 2010, her mother has been a kind and public face of organ donation. Donation is a simple and valuable act, but one that too many people shrink from, particularly in minority communities. It has become Artelia Griggs’ quest to change that — no matter how nervous she might find herself on a Fox2 news set.

Gift of Life MOTTEP will hold its 18th annual LIFE Walk/Run Saturday morning on Belle Isle. MOTTEP stands for Minority Organ Tissue Transplant Education Program, and with the event looming, Griggs and Detroit program director Remonia Chapman chatted with the reassuring Deena Centofanti. Continue reading