Open house held at Celebration of Life Monument which honors organ donors

KSL | Ashley Moser
Levi's cornea now belongs to a girl named Maddy who Rhonda Johnson met last year. Photo: Mike DeBernardo, KSL
SALT LAKE CITY — It's a bitter-sweet relationship — the one between an organ donor's family and the donor's recipient. For the hundreds of Utahns on the donor waiting list, getting off of it usually means someone loses their life.

Rhonda Johnson knows all about loss. Her son Levi was hit and killed by a drunk driver while out walking with his father in 2014.

"Someone decided that ‪5 o'clock at night was a good time to drive home drunk and hit them, and they both died instantly," she said.

Levi's cornea and heart valves were able to be donated. The decision to give the organs up as a donation was easy for Johnson, whose husband was once on a kidney transplant list.

"When I said 'yes' I just felt complete peace that a part of him got to continue to live on," Johnson said.

His cornea now belongs to a girl named Maddy who Johnson met last year.

"I am her donor mom. She is my daughter and we're family," she said. "That's just the way it is." Continue reading

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