Nine Mile Falls teen to donate organs after fatal fall, family urges others to become donors
SPOKANE, Wash. — A Nine Mile Falls family was left stricken last Saturday after their loved one, 16-year-old Brandon Burbridge fell off the back of a moving truck and hit his head.
He was knocked unconscious and likely never felt pain.
Though emergency responders tried their best and he was Life flighted to Sacred Heart Medical Center, he passed away.
“When you find that tragedy can turn into some form of hope, it gives us comfort to know that Brandon, even in the end is sacrificing himself,” said his Auntie Kim Davis.
The teen had made the decision when receiving his first drivers license, to register as an organ donor.
“He is going to be creating a legacy that only Brandon can create and he will be creating it for several families,” said another Aunt Cindy Skeie.
Though at his young age, his family still had to give the final ok for his body to be donated, they said as heartbreaking as the tragedy was, there was no questions they would support him in this.
“You’ll never lose that memory, you will have them in your heart, though its hard not to hold them, but its nice to have the comfort of knowing he will be saving others,” said Skeie.
Brandon’s organs were very healthy and he will be donating all of them, some donors are only able to donate a few. He will also be donating his tissue and cornea.
The need for organs only continues to grow, with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services noting that there were more than 113,000 folks on the waiting list for organs as of the beginning of 2019.
They also note that 20 people die each day waiting for an organ.
Sacred Heart Medical Center has a Wall of Hero’s, where they recognize the life saving gift made by other donors. They have also begun holding a walk of honor for donors as they are wheeled from their room in the ICU to surgery.
Medical professionals at all levels line the hallways as the gurney is wheeled by in respect. Thursday afternoon, Brandon will receive this honor.
His family asks that his future recipients, whomever and wherever they may be make the most of their second chance.
“Embrace family, enjoy those memories and just remember the importance of a simple act of kindness,” said Davis, “really look out and see where you can benefit other people.”
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