Organ donor transplant list continues to grow, more donors still needed

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — After nearly 30 years of marriage, it’s just Sheryl Marlor and her four sons.

“The full calendar year’s a very tough year. Every anniversary, every holiday, but I want this to close a chapter and begin a new one,” Marlor said.

Her husband, David, passed away exactly one year ago at 52 years old.

“David was an avid fisherman, loved the mountains, loved to be in the outdoors, loved God’s country, especially in Colorado,” Marlor said.

While she mourns the loss of her partner in life, she celebrates the lives he’s helped.

“Dave Marlor’s gift affected up to 50 people through tissue donation, skin donation and his corneas were also recovered. So, he saved the eyesight of someone,” said Tom Kosola, donation consultant for Donor Alliance.

David was a registered organ and tissue donor–something officials with Donor Alliance say there’s a great need for.

According to Donor Alliance, more than 120,000 people across the country are waiting for an organ or tissue donation.

One organ donor can save up to eight lives and one tissue donor can affect the lives of up to 50 people.

“You’re actually saving someone’s life by your gift. All of our patients have no chance of recovery. Donation only occurs after brain death has been declared,” Kosola said.

According to Donor Alliance, more than 2,700 patients in both Colorado and Wyoming are waiting for an organ or tissue transplant.

“In our lifetime, you’re more likely to be in need of a transplant than to actually be a donor yourself,” Kosola said.

Last year, half a million lives were saved through organ and tissue donations.

“It was a really tough thing to do, but I’m glad that he’s helping other people in his life,” Marlor said.

Officials with Penrose- St. Francis said a flag ceremony will be held anytime there is an organ or tissue donation case. The flag will be flown for five days in honor of the patient’s gift.

>> Learn more about becoming an organ donor, click here.

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