Organ donor to be honored on Rose Parade float

Los Angeles Times | Brittany Woolsey

Brian Koontz applies the eyebrows to a tribute to his best friend, Tom Zech, that will be used during the 2016 Rose Parade. (DREW A. KELLEY, / CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER)

Tom Zech loved the outdoors and riding, especially motorcycles and quads, also known as all-terrain vehicles.

He twice joined A Ride Across America on its cross-country journeys, which included visits to hospitals as part of the nonprofit group's promotion of organ donation.

The Huntington Beach resident also loved giving, and after he died suddenly of an asthma attack in September 2013, he gave what his brother-in-law considered "the ultimate gift" — his organs.

Zech will be taking his final ride for organ donation in the form of one of 60 floragraphs aboard Donate Life's float in the Rose Parade in Pasadena on New Year's Day. A floragraph is a representation of a portrait made out of items like flowers and spices. Continue reading