By raising a Donate Life flag, Anderson Hospital helps family grieve
Posted August 16, 2013 in Hospital Partner News
Jean Day was attending a seminar at Mid-America Transplant Services when she first learned of hospitals raising and flying Donate Life flags in support of organ and tissue donation. The Director of Emergency Services at Anderson Hospital in Maryville, Illinois considered her facility’s campus and was inspired to raise a Donate Life flag there.
After about one year, Anderson Hospital held a small flag raising ceremony Friday morning. Her persistence to complete the project, which included installing a new flag pole, created an opportunity for a grieving family to heal.
Bruce Moore of Bruce Concrete Construction was working on another project at the hospital when he was approached about pouring concrete for the flag pole. Upon learning the details of the project, Bruce offered to donate the materials in memory of his nephew, Anthony Don Cato.
Anthony, who joined the organ and tissue donor registry when he received his driver’s license at 16 years old, was 24 when he passed away in 2008. His family made the heroic decision to donate his tissue. “The opportunity to do something like this … Anthony touched 29 other lives,” Bruce said. “This is part of the healing process for my sister, her family, and our entire family. This has been a positive thing for everyone. It was something little I could do.”
Shortly after Bruce’s offer to Anderson Hospital, John Mikes of Gateway Lawn Services donated the landscaping.
Jean said she hopes the flag becomes “a reflection area, a place to remember, to think back on better times, but to remember the donor.”