Happy Thanksgiving from Trillium Gift of Life Network

    Reminding Ontarians to register their organ and tissue donation wishes
    and talk to their family

    TORONTO, Oct. 9 /CNW/ - As Thanksgiving approaches Trillium Gift of Life
Network (TGLN) is reminding all Ontarians to talk to their family about their
organ and tissue donation wishes.
    "Thanksgiving is a time for all of us to give thanks. I am especially
grateful for all those who when faced with the tragedy of losing a loved one
made the courageous decision to donate their organs and tissue and give the
gift of life. This Thanksgiving please take a moment and give thanks to all
organ and tissue donors who selflessly donate their loved ones organs and
tissue and save hundreds of lives a year," said Frank Markel, President and
CEO of TGLN. "This holiday weekend talk to your family about your organ and
tissue donation wishes."
    One organ and tissue donor can save up to eight lives and enhance the
lives of up to 75 others.
    "When my four-year-old son Fraser died my world ended, but I am forever
thankful that in the face of overwhelming grief my husband and I chose to
donate Fraser's organs. Nothing would ease the pain and heartache from the
loss of our oldest son but we had the opportunity to make a difference with
what otherwise would have been such a senseless loss," said Claire Alexander,
of Guelph.
    "We made the choice to give another child a chance at life - an
opportunity that Fraser did not have. Our decision made a difference in the
lives of seven children. I have met a number of organ recipients since
Fraser's death and I feel such pride that my family has played a part in
giving others a second chance. I know in my heart that there are mothers
smiling because of Fraser's gift and that makes my loss a little more
    Today in Ontario there are 1731 people waiting for an organ transplant.
Of those, 1076 are men, 633 are women and 22 are children.
    Debbie Bredin is thankful everyday because of the decision her donor
families made.
    "Saying thank you doesn't seem enough for the magic we see everyday in
our daughter Kailyn and our son Ayden. We are thankful everyday because of the
brave choice someone made," said Bredin, of Ajax.
    Both Kailyn and Ayden were born with the same heart defect and required
life-saving heart transplants, almost immediately after birth. Kailyn received
her heart transplant when she was seven months old, almost 11 years ago and
Ayden received his heart transplant when he was just 20 days old, almost eight
years ago.
    You have the power to save a life by registering your wishes to be an
organ and tissue donor. Today, you can register your wishes at an OHIP office
when you renew your health card. If you have the red and white card or have
recently renewed your card and did not register your wishes, you can go to the
Trillium Gift of Life Network website and download an "Organ and Tissue Donor
Registration" form, fill it out and mail it in to the address on the form.
    Please visit our website at www.giftoflife.on.ca or call 416-363-4001 or
toll free 1-800-263-2833.

For further information:

For further information: Carrie Hoto, Trillium Gift of Life Network,
(416) 619-2299 (office), (416) 735-0099 (cell)

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