GIVING THE GIFT OF LIFE: Recipient, donor's family share stories in Meridian

Paula Merritt / The Meridian Star
Bill and Leslie Carruth, whose daughter, Allie, died in an accident on March 16, point at the balloons sailing across the city with their son, William, standing next to them Thursday afternoon. A large crowd gathered to honor National Donate Life Month at Dumont Plaza in Meridian.
A few years ago, Shirley Sollie was a busy, healthy grandmother. She was active in her community and church, worked as a nurse at local hospitals, and owned a children’s store in Meridian called “Twinkles.”

That all changed when, at the age of 57, she started feeling short of breath. After several trips to the doctor, she was told she needed a double-lung transplant.

“I was in total shock,” Sollie said Thursday at a ceremony recognizing National Donate Life Month at Dumont Plaza in Meridian.

“I knew I had been living a life of constant fear – fear that my lungs would shut down at any moment…fear that I was going to die.”

Despite being a “hard match,” a donor for Sollie was eventually found. Continue reading
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