LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — About 114,000 people are waiting for an organ transplant in the United States. Six-hundred-and eighteen of them live in Nevada.
“I think it’s imperative to be one. I don’t see why anybody wouldn’t want to be. Saving somebody’s life — that’s amazing,” said 37-year-old Summer Blake, whose name is on the transplant list.
On Wednesday morning, 18-year-old Michael Sigler’s family and friends walked him from his hospital room to UMC’s operation room in what is called an Honor Walk.
Sigler was killed in a crash while he was riding his motorcycle home from school on Friday. Two months before his death, Sigler signed up to be an organ donor. His final wish was to donate his heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, and tissue.
“Honoring a donor hero in this way to me is the ultimate way to show that they’re giving this gift to someone else and their legacy of life is living on,” said Christina Hernandez, Nevada Donor Network.
Blake is one of many people on the waiting list for a liver and kidney transplant. She has cryptogenic cirrhosis of the liver.
“You’re talking about someone dying, so my child can live; there’s no guarantee that you’ll even get that call in time,” said RuthAnn Scott, Blake’s mother.
Just two years ago, Blake was given two months to live. She’s in the final stages of liver failure, but she hasn’t stopped fighting for her life.
“The waiting part, not knowing; that’s the unfortunate part of this,” Blake said.
A single organ donor can save the lives of eight people. Blake and Scott are hoping for a miracle.
“She’s been my best friend since the day she was born and, I honestly can’t even picture life without her here,” Scott said. “I can’t envision that. I’ve tried because we had to and I can’t. I’ve told her 100 times that I don’t know if I could keep going if she’s not here.”
Blake thanked everyone at Loma Linda Liver Clinic for helping her. Without them, she said she would not be alive today.
To register to be an organ donor, go here.