On August 13, 2007, Evansville native Thomas Walls was stabbed in the neck at a party. Despite quick and excellent care from Deaconess nurses and doctors, Thomas died from his wounds. Because Thomas chose to be an organ donor, his tragic death actually saved the lives of six people he never knew. Now, the Indiana Organ Procurement Organization (IOPO) and Donate Life America are recognizing this special young man on a float in the Rose Parade.
Since 2004, the Donate Life Rose Parade float has served as a memorial to organ and tissue donors and a platform for donor families, living donors, and transplant recipients to inspire the world to save and heal those in need through the “gift of life.” This year, Thomas Walls will be recognized as an organ donor on the 2013 Donate Life float as one of 72 floragraph honorees. Floragraphs are artistic portraits created by using spices, seeds, and other organic materials to cover a digitized photograph of a person.
On Thursday, December 13, from 9-11 a.m., Thomas’ mother will join the nurses who cared for Thomas at Deaconess as they decorate his floragraph for the Rose Parade.
The public and the media are invited to attend this special event in the main lobby of Deaconess Hospital, 600 Mary Street, Evansville. Representatives from IOPO will also be in the lobby to answer questions about organ and tissue donation and to register donors.
Interviews with Thomas’ mother, Deaconess nurses, and IOPO representatives will be available.