"On November 2, 1997, our oldest son, Scott, 34, was killed near the Alaska-Canadian border in a pedestrian/motor vehicle accident. The following day we received a phone call from Life Alaska Transplant asking if we would consider donating Scott's tissue. We, as a family, unanimously made the decision to do this. Scott would have gladly agreed.

Shortly after our family's great loss, our youngest daughter, Ann, needed neck surgery to replace two herniated discs. She called wondering if a sibling could request a bone donation from a family member. We discussed this with Chris White and Fran McNeill of Life Alaska. They worked together with the University of Florida Tissue Bank and made the transplant surgery possible.

This donation has not only healed Ann bodily, but also has healed Ann emotionally. During their young adult years, Scott and Ann had their many differences. Since Scott's death, Ann has had a difficult time with guilt.

Ann always thought there would be time to become friends with her brother. She always thought one day they might be able to stop the fighting and ill feelings between them and become what should have always been - a loving brother and sister relationship. But she knows she was wrong - she didn't have all the time in the world. She lost her oldest brother to a hit-and-run accident. She was never able to say she was sorry for all the words, sorry for all the fights. She was never able to ask for forgiveness and to tell him she loved him. She feels guilt over words not said, hugs not given, friendship not shared. She regrets so much.

Many people feel this way when a loved one is taken away suddenly. They think no one can understand the feelings of remorse. Many people pray that somehow, some way, they forgive us and that they love us in spite of all the differences.

Ann's prayer was answered through her brother's bone donation which gave her control over her neck injury. She believes because of this wonderful gift, her brother and God were able to ease her feelings of guilt and fill her with their assurance of love and acceptance. It gives her great comfort to know a part of her brother survives not only in her but in so many other people and that his donation of life has eased the pain, suffering, and worries of the injured and sick.

As parents, my husband, Merlyn, and I have experienced both the giving and receiving of what Life Alaska Transplant and The University of Florida Tissue Bank are all about - the gift of hope & renewed life.

Though we have experienced and continue to experience much sadness and pain because of Scott's early death, we have also experienced the fulfillment and joy of knowing his death was not in vain. Many recipients have and will be given renewed life, happiness, and extended years with their loving family members and friends.

We are so thankful to God our Father and to Life Alaska for guiding our family to make this gift-of-life decision. What a comfort this has been to us and to so many others.

God is Good!"