Gift of Life MOTTEP LIFE Walk/Run celebrates 20 years

Emilio DeFoe, left, with mother Terra DeFoe. Emilio signed the donor registry and saved the lives of six people when he died in 2014.(Photo: Terra DeFoe)
When Terra DeFoe encouraged her then-18-year-old son Emilio to sign up at the Secretary of State’s office to become an organ donor and place a red heart on his drivers license, she told him it was a good thing to do and explain it was the reason his grandmother has mismatched eyes.

She didn’t think surgeons would look to that red heart sticker six years later when a 10-hour surgery could not alleviate the bleeding in Emilio’s brain after he had a heart aneurism.

Now, six people carry parts of him and she has been involved in outreach ever since her son’s death in 2014.

“It’s a continued work, it’s truly a love story that will continue on because it continues going through someone else,” DeFoe said. “With the major health challenges that take place in our city, organ donation is a form of that selfless act, that person’s last selfless act.”

DeFoe will join other donor families, recipients and organ donation advocates this weekend for the 20th anniversary of the Gift of Life Minority Organ Tissue Transplant Education Program (MOTTEP) LIFE Walk/Run. The event is Saturday on Belle Isle State Park. Continue reading

The Gift of Life MOTTEP LIFE Walk/Run celebrates 20 years of raising awareness and funds for organ and tissue donation and education. (Photo: Julianne Lindsey)

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