Letters to the Editor

Letter hits home

To the editor:

I read with tears the well-written letter of Jess’s crusade for organ donation to become an opt-out-only procedure (May 8 Capital News).

Just a few years ago my heart broke when our son Brett, struck down by brain cancer, was told his organs would not be suitable for donation. This was one of his strongest wishes and a meaningful way to contribute to life even as he lost his own.

My father gave permission for organ donation at my brother’s death, and saved many lives.

I would definitely support the idea of signing a refusal to donate, instead of carrying a permission card, in order to optimize the availability and time line. This would normalize certain procedures at death, such as placing patients on life support until recipients are prepared, while families already dealing with tough emotions could be spared being approached by transplant coordinators. There’s no perfect solution, but we do have the technology and this could be an effective method of turning tragedy into something beautiful while resolving long waiting lists.

Sharon J. Cemer,



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