This is a very sad story from a friend of mine at work. Her niece died in a pedestrian/car accident. It was an accident plain and simple so there was no blame passed around. She was 16 years old and was crossing a street in British Columbia and got hit by a car.
We live in Manitoba so the parents got this terrible news via the phone. They made arrangements to fly to BC and bring her body home for the funeral.
When they got there they found out that their daughter had signed a donor card when she got her drivers license. Her parents thought this was a good thing being that she wanted to help others in case of her death. What they didn’t know was that she had signed for “complete donation” which meant EVERYTHING. They found their daughter not in the morgue but on a respirator to keep everything “alive.”
They were shocked to say the least. Their grief grew seeing the daughter who just looked asleep. Now they tell the doctor that they want to take her body home to bury her and were told there would be “nothing” left to bury. Her mother was horrified. I’m not sure this doctor had the best bedside manner. So a tug or war started. The parents ended up giving in.
It got into the papers and it was on the news and these parents just wanted closure on their grief. They thought in the end it was what their daughter wanted so they just let it go and hoped everyone that got her skin, eyes, hair and everything else, did okay with it all.
But this leads me to question if a 16 year old should be signing something like this with no word to the parents. If it’s to be legal and binding, shouldn’t the parents have to sign something too? This kind of thing is getting a lot of attention right now in Canada. It’s starting to come into the schools about how important organ donation is.
I would feel good and proud of any of my kids that felt this way and I would support it but I’d really like to know about it. This is what my girlfriend also said. Had her sister known, it would have made all the difference in the world to her but it was such a shock. I think the biggest shock was seeing her daughter laying there looking “alive” but asleep.
What’s your take on this?