This holiday season give the Gift of Life

    Sign an organ donor card and talk to your family about your wishes

    TORONTO, Dec. 20 /CNW/ - Trillium Gift of Life Network (TGLN) is
celebrating the holiday season and reminding Ontarians to sign their organ
donor cards and speak to their family about their wishes.
    "As you are picking up last minute gifts and heading home to family and
friends, we'd like to remind you about another gift, the gift of life," said
Frank Markel, President and CEO of TGLN. "Right now in Ontario there are too
many fathers, mothers, sons and daughters on the organ transplant waiting
list. Please, take a moment during this special holiday to sign your donor
card and discuss your organ and tissue donation wishes with your loved ones.
Your decision and your conversation can save a life."
    Today in Ontario, 1642 patients are on the transplant waiting list.
    "I am too young to die," said 34-year-old Dave Choi from Toronto,
Ontario. "I need a liver transplant and my doctors tell me the wait is almost
two years. I will likely not survive that long. It doesn't have to be like
this - Please, sign an organ donor card and talk to your family about your
wishes today - to me, it's an easy way to make a big difference."
    Organs and tissue that can be donated after death include the heart,
liver, kidneys, pancreas, lungs, small bowel, stomach, corneas, heart valves,
bone and skin.
    "Organ and tissue donation is the most incredible gift you could ever
give," said Cindy Quinn, a 28-year-old heart recipient from Innisfil. "I'm
here today because of a most extraordinary act of kindness. This holiday, I
want to thank the family somewhere out there who found it in themselves to
save my life and I want to remind people to sign their cards and speak to
their families about their wishes. It saves lives."
    Everyone is a potential organ and tissue donor. The oldest Canadian organ
donor to date was over 90 years of age while the oldest tissue donor was 102.
    "You can express your wishes to become an organ and tissue donor by
signing a donor card and talking to your loved ones," said Markel. "It's
critical to share your decision with your family, as they will be asked for
final consent to donate your organs after your death. Discuss your intentions
with them this holiday season and give them a copy of your signed donor card
so they can understand, support and respect your wishes in the future."
    For more details on Trillium Gift of Life Network or where you can obtain
an organ donor card please visit our website at 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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