'Wall of Heroes' remembers those who gave so others could live

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - By Bob Hallmark - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email | Twitter

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - A solemn wall of remembrance was dedicated Wednesday to those who became heroes in their passing, by giving the gift that help others live: the gift of organ donation.

A simple wall at Good Shepherd Medical Center will always be important to the families of those who saved lives through organ donation.

"We are now honoring those lives and the patients that have given their lives so that other people could benefit from organ donation," said GSMC CEO Ed Banos.

Wilbert Lyons passed June 2, 2009. His organ donation saved three lives including a 4-year-old boy.

"He saved several," said Michelle Lyons, Wilbert's daughter. "He actually saved a 4-year-old boy with his liver....I'm proud because he left his legacy. It's also sad that he's not here but he was able to save other people."

The families of the donors were on hand to honor their loved ones.

"[I am] very proud," said Lyons. "He loved helping people and he loved children to save that 4-year-old boy's life. It's so much like him...Even thought his grandchildren probably won't remember him, they can always come here to the hospital and see his picture. There are people alive now because of him."

"I think he wouldn't believe it himself," said Reagan Lyons-Smith. "He loved people. We've always known him to love to help people."

For everyone who has lost someone, there is always another story.

"A young father who lost his daughter in a car accident...from the day his daughter was born he'd always dreamed about giving her away at her marriage," said Jim Cutler, with STA. "The recipient of his daughter's heart and lungs got married and he walked her down the isle at her wedding."

As their lives ended, they gave life to others.

"There's more people that need organs than actual donors," said Banos.

"I would strongly encourage to be organ donors," said Reagan.

Good Shepherd joined with the Southwest Transplant Alliance to design the wall.

There are 13 names on the Good Shepherd Wall of Honor. All of them saved lives through this organ donation.

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