Real-life stories of ultimate sacrifice grace Donate Life Month event at Franciscan St. Anthony Health

DonateLife_LogoCROWN POINT | Colorful and emotional stories of people who have given of themselves so that others might live were told April 4 during an annual Franciscan St. Anthony Health – Crown Point observance of National Donate Life Month.

The program took place in the hospital’s Corpus Christi Chapel, starting with, a procession of flowers and remarks from hospital and city officials and representatives of organ donor agencies, including the Gift of Hope Organ and Tissue Donor Network, the Indiana Lions Eye and Tissue Transplant Bank and Life Line Stem Cell Services. The hospital partners with those agencies to facilitate organ, eye, tissue and stem cell donations.

Franciscan St. Anthony Health donor witnesses presented testimonies of how their lives and those of loved ones have been affected. They included Linda Belcher, an Emergency Medical Services educator, whose late son was a heart transplant recipient; Jean Miller, Emergency Department nursing manager, shown in the flower procession, with husband, Ryan, and son, Landon, who is a vascular tissue recipient; Julie Parent, an Alverno Information Services business analyst, who was a kidney donor; and former nurse Sandy Whitenack, shown at the podium, whose late daughter, shown on the left in the scrapbook, was an organ donor, whose heart now beats in the woman shown at the right.

The ceremony was followed by a Mass, celebrated by the Rev. Tony Janik and Deacon James Etter. According to Donate Life-Indiana, more than 117,000 persons nationwide, including nearly 1,500 Hoosiers, await life-saving transplants.

For more information on the Donate Life program, visit:

Video Highlights from the Program

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