Johnny Talbot, Donor
A Very Special Boy with Big Blue Eyes
Posted January 10, 2011
Who would have ever dreamed that a warm August weekend meant for a family reunion, bringing family members together from many parts of the country to a small town would turn into a weekend of horrible tragedy? Who would have ever dreamed that Merry was watching her son eat his very last meal as he excitedly exclaimed to her, “Mommy look at me, I’m eating at the big kids table!” That indeed was the last meal that two and a half-year-old Johnny Talbot would eat.
Johnny was born on March 17, 1990. A special day for his family, not only was it St. Patrick’s Day, but it was also his great-grandmother’s 70th birthday. “Everyone immediately noticed his big blue eyes and really long feet. Most people would think that his long feet came from his dad, but everyone in the family joked, they knew they came from me,” Merry said.
From day one, Johnny brought a special love and joy into the lives of those around him. “I remember so many people telling me what a sweet personality he had,” Merry smiles as she thinks of her son. “He was a great kid, who really enjoyed life, and really enjoyed people.”
“I remember so many special times with Johnny, but one of the best memories I have is watching him eat Ted Drewe’s Frozen Custard. Even though he was only two and a half, I would spell “T-e-d-s” to my husband Mark and Johnny would say, “Mommy are you spelling Ted’s, are we going to go there?”
He loved to ride his bike and play on the playground with his friends. Hannah, Sarah, and Rachel, were a few of Johnny’s favorite friends. They were very close family friends and extra special fun because they were triplets. Johnny loved to go everywhere with them. Each year on his birthday, Hannah, Sarah, and Rachel still wear a “Dalmatian Pin” in honor of their special friend.
Johnny also loved to play with his dad. “They were very close and spent lots of time together, Johnny was Mark’s special buddy. They would laugh and play for hours, I used to love to just sit and watch them together.” That warm August evening was no different. Mark and Johnny had been playing with the “big kids” all afternoon as the rest of the family watched, enjoying the fun. Who would have dreamed what was to come only a few short hours later?
There was nothing unusual about the short trip from one family member’s house to another. Delores had made the trip from her daughter’s home to her own countless times. She was driving Mark, Johnny, Merry and Mark’s mom Mary to her home to spend the night planning to join the rest of the family first thing the next morning. For Delores, Mark and Johnny, the next morning never came.
Because of a choice made by a man who decided to drink alcohol, and smoke marijuana their lives ended tragically. Delores and Mark were declared dead at the scene, while Johnny sustained very serious head injuries and was immediately flown to a children’s hospital. Merry was also very seriously injured and Mark’s mom suffered a concussion and broken jaw.
The doctors worked heroically trying to save Johnny’s young life… he never responded. Although they were able to get his heart beating on its own he was never able to breathe on his own. It became apparent very quickly that things did not look good. “I remember asking the doctors in the emergency room if he was injured that seriously, and he wasn’t going to make it would it be possible to donate his organs? I knew in my heart that he was gone,” Merry said as a tear came to her eye.
“I wanted to be able to share a part of Johnny’s special life through the gift of organ donation. It was the best decision I could have ever made.”
After reviewing the results of several tests, the doctors called Merry to tell her that Johnny was brain dead. “I still couldn’t believe that this was happening when they called to tell me that final time that Johnny was brain dead. I couldn’t believe that my baby was gone. There was so much wrong with what was happening in my life. Mark and Johnny were both gone in an instant.” The doctors explained to Merry what brain death meant, and asked if she would still like to donate Johnny’s organs. She responded unreservedly with a yes. “I wanted to be able to share a part of Johnny’s special life through the gift of organ donation. It was the best decision I could have ever made.”
Johnny’s memory will live on in the hearts of his family and friends forever. He was a special little boy who made a large impact in his world. He will always bring a smile to those who knew him, as they remember a very special little boy with big blue eyes.