WESTWOOD, Kan. - Eleni Maloney’s mother, Ruby, passed away unexpectedly earlier this year. She and her family then made the decision to donate Ruby's liver.
Eleni described her mom as a very devoted, giving person and said, “She'd give the shirt off her back…the food off her plate."
Although the grief is still new, Eleni said she and her family are comforted.
"Knowing that it helped a woman who is just like me and is around the same age and has children, I can only imagine what that has meant to her to be able to see her children grow up,” said Eleni.
Eleni’s family is just one of hundreds helped by Midwest Transplant Network (MTN). The not-for-profit Organ Procurement Organization (OPO) has a primary office is in Westwood, Kansas and three satellite locations in Wichita, Columbia and Joplin.
Erin Gregory is MTN’s Marketing and Public Relations Manager. Gregory says more than 112,000 people are waiting for an organ transplant in the United States. 2,200 of those are in Kansas and Missouri.
One person's decision to donate can save the lives of up to eight people and directly improve the lives of up to 50 people through tissue donation.
The result of MTN’s life-saving work is seen every day in people of all ages - including children - who were given a second chance at life because of the generosity of a stranger.
Gregory said, “To see recipients who are living, standing, breathing before you…who are alive thanks to those generous donors, it's really amazing to connect all those dots and see the gratitude on both sides.”
For a list of frequently asked questions about organ donation, visit mtn.org. To register as an organ or tissue donor, go to donatelifekansas.com or donatelifemissouri.com.
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More Proud to Call it Home
Wonderscope Children's Museum of Kansas City is filled with fun and dynamic exhibit areas along with a variety of programs aimed at children ten years of age and under. Located in the heart of Shawnee, it attracts visitors from all over the Kansas City area.