Where does one begin explaining the beauty of another's life?
My gentle, loving wife Jo Ann Donovan died March 7th from an unexpected brain hemorrhage some hours after receiving a successful liver transplant in Boston. The night before her operation she was as happy as any young girl invited to a prom by virtue of another's generosity in tragedy.
During her illness she was as fearless a warrior as the bravest of men and always treated others with the kindness and respect that we all deserve. There was a lengthy stay at a rehabilitation hospital where she fought back from a prior stroke with a courage that can only be described as inspirational.
At the youthful age of fifty nine her achievements are many. Our marriage can only be described as pure bliss, a gift granted so lovely that even in this dark time I feel an extraordinary emotional and wondrous passion that sustains me.
I see her in the children Raymond, Michael, Cathleen and RJ who are all the greatest of her accomplishments. No other woman can surpass the tenderness and love bestowed in the daily activities of motherhood. All of the grandchildren have each held special and private places in her heart.
The unique gift which is life and all the promise that it holds is the most powerful thread that binds us all. Jo Ann often revealed to me a quiet peace with the way of the world. It is our duty to express this delicate beauty, the moment of being, the opportunity to live well and honor those who were here before by striving to achieve our highest individual potentials.
Of the extended family, friends, neighbors and co-workers who experienced moments of time with Jo Ann all share the expressions of thoughtful refection, humor, kindness and hope for the future. I am indebted to them all for such an out pouring genuine sympathy in this my most sorrow filled time.
Many have asked, "What charity or cause may I contribute to in the name of Jo Ann?" My answer is simple. No single gratuity of money can change what has happened and continues to happen to others all across this country. What is needed is a change of heart, mind set and superstition along with a sustained campaign of education and awareness.
Still there is a vast shortage of organs for people in exactly the same situation as Jo Ann. They wait and wait only to become more grievously ill. Some die waiting. Some die as their bodies are too weak to withstand the vigorous nature of such miraculous operations despite every effort of the medical community.
Time is of the essence and it is the one factor that we as a people can change. If an organ was available to my Sweet Honey Bear a year ago most likely today we would be enjoying the spring bloom, the laughter of kindred spirits, the warmth of the morning sun, our family and our life together.
I beg you to look within if you are not already a donor. Your generosity can give hope and life to others in need even after death. If you are a donor please speak with all who you know to help educated and spread the word of this tremendous need to reduce the waiting period now measured in years.
Today there will be unfortunate events where human life will be lost. These accidents and personal catastrophes will be no less sorrow filled than mine. Unending tears will rain down tearing at the soul along with the questions of why and the silence that follows.
For Jo Ann the choice at that moment in time was clear. Cheat death. Give life. Even after all that has transpired one of her final wishes was that of being an organ donor herself. Successful transplants were completed hours after her passing.
That is one piece of a beautiful life.
If you have any question or would like to help our effort through tax deductible contributions, send correspondence to:
Donate Life Inc
152 Clark Road - Suite 1
Brookline Massachusetts 02445
Direct electronic mail to: Donate@TheDonovans.us