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Cori, Organ Donor

God’s Timing and Organ Donation as the Common Thread

Joni Green is a firm believer in God’s timing. Green’s daughter Cori died at 22, and the family had her service in February, which is American Heart Month. Cori was an organ and tissue donor, and one of the many organs she was able to donate was her heart. 

“We always believed organ donation would be a good choice,” Green said. “Then when it came down to actually having to walk that belief, it was a no brainer. Cori was a very giving person. I wasn’t surprised to know that she had already chosen to be an organ donor and noted the decision on her driver’s license.” 

Two years after her daughter’s death, Green was able to meet the heart recipient (who also received Cori’s lungs), a woman named Crystal. “Bless her heart,” Green said. “She hugged me so tight because she wanted me to be able to feel Cori’s heart still beating.” 

Green says she believes the fact that her daughter was a runner was what kept her heart in such great shape. It was also another way for Cori to be of service to someone else in need. “She ran road races, and there was one that benefited the Alabama Deaf and Blind School. So she acted as a spotter for a blind person to hold onto her arm and they would run the race together. She was able to use that gift for good but I had no idea her gifts would also be used for organ donation.” 

Cori was also able to donate her kidneys, liver, and tissues. Her pancreas was used for research purposes. “I remember when I was talking to the organ donation representative, she mentioned how one donor can potentially affect nearly 200 people,” Green added. 

It was God’s timing again when Green was there for a friend who had lost two of her children. Her friend’s daughter was able to donate her corneas, the one thing Cori was unable to donate. “I said to her, ‘isn’t that crazy? Here we are as friends. We both lost children that were of adult age and between the two of them they were a complete donation.’ It was a very surreal moment.” 

As painful as the whole experience has been, Green knows that there’s power in sharing her daughter’s story. And organ donation was the common thread connecting all of it. 

“There are still pieces of her functioning in the world and doing good for somebody else,” she said. “That just puts a smile on my face to know that in the midst of all this negative, there is a definite positive.” 

If you’d like the opportunity to give the selfless gift of life, register to become an organ donor and add your name to the donor registry.

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