Karen“I was 9 years old when I was diagnosed with juvenile Type 1 diabetes. I had diabetes for 32 years, and I suffered from kidney disease. On January 1, 2014, I received the gift of life from Adam Joseph Shay. At the time of my transplant, I was 13 years clean and sober. Adam was 1 year clean and sober. He went out one last time and overdosed on ‘bad heroin.’

“Today, I celebrate 18 years clean and sober, and Adam is celebrating 4 years clean and sober.

“I started volunteering for Lifebanc about a year ago, maybe longer, with Adam’s mom. The organization means a lot to me and my family. Since my transplant, my husband had a major heart attack and will eventually need a transplant. My sister died in April 2017 waiting for a lung and liver, but she was able to give the gift of sight. And, when my father died in February 2000, he donated 54 bone grafts across 15 states, including Ohio.

“I volunteer to give back to the organization that gave me life.”


One thought on “Karen

  1. Thank you for sharing my story. It gives me hope evertime someone signs up to be an organ donor… Just think! The next child to have Diabetes may not have to die waiting on a life saving transplant just because YOU said yes today. There is nothing better than the selfless gift of registering to be a hero to someone someday… Thank you Summit stories for sharing my story. I want to particularly thank all the already registered organ donors and those I have had the honor to meet personally. See you at the Akron Bus Hub later this month!


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