Thirteen thousand participate in 15th annual Donate Life 5K/1K Run/Walk at CSUF to support organ and tissue donations

THE DAILY TITAN | Sarah El Mahmoud 
Thirteen thousand people took to the CSUF Intramural Fields Saturday for the 15th annual “Donate Life 5K/1K Run/Walk and Family Festival” to support organ and tissue donations.

Most of the attendees were families who formed “teams” wearing shirts and holding signs with pictures and names of loved ones who died as they walked through campus.

“My son donated his cornea, skin and bone tissue and it just brings me peace to be here and be surrounded by people who are also in pain the way I am and who are here to honor their loved ones,” said participant Sylvia Bertolette.

Bertolette’s son Damien Ramirez died from an accidental drug overdose at 24 years old. Bertolette’s husband, friends and other family members were with her at the event. It was her third year attending.

Tom Mone, the CEO of OneLegacy and board member of Donate Life California, thanked the crowd for contributing to the organization’s lifesaving work.

Donate Life California is the nation’s largest organ and tissue donor registry. Mone said it helped save more lives in 2016 than any other organization in United States history.

“It’s important that all of us are committed to blowing away the fear and anxiety of those who languish on donor lists,” said Fullerton Mayor Bruce Whitaker. “Through this effort, we can help allay those fears and concerns and provide that immensely valuable gift of life.” Continue reading

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