Eight months ago, 16-year-old Caleb Beaver of Saucier, Mississippi, passed away on Christmas Day of 2011 from two strokes caused by an undiagnosed birth defect. He was a soccer-playing kid who loved to play bass guitar and wanted to be a doctor. His parents decided to donate his organs. Even though one organ donor can save eight lives, Caleb’s parents didn’t expect any of those saved to contact them. Caleb’s mother, April Beaver, tells WLOX she was praying to have “a dream or something” which would bring her closer to her son. The next day, she received a phone call.
The man on the phone was Dr. Chuck Shelton, a married father of two from Kentucky who was saved with Caleb’s donated heart. He wanted to meet April and Owen Beaver and thank them in person. Both families met at Gulfport Biloxi International Airport. Caleb’s family was then able to listen to his heart beating again using a stethoscope.
Here’s the video of Caleb’s mom hearing his heart beat. If you’ll excuse me, there’s something in my eye:
Dr. Shelton, his wife Amy and two teenage sons will spend the weekend getting to know the Beaver family. Together they will hold a potluck lunch and invite the public to join them for that and then a balloon release at 2:00 at the soccer fields on County Farm Road in Gulfport to remember and honor Caleb Beaver. They also want to raise awareness about organ donation. [WLOX]
I’ll admit I bawled my freakin’ eyes out watching the video, then one more time trying to write this post. Then again while proofreading it. Yes, I am a giant wuss.
If you’ve been meaning to sign up as an organ donor, here’s how to do so in your state. I’m going to need a new liver someday (blogging occupational hazard), so it would be much appreciated.