LOWELVILLE, Ohio (CBS) This Mother’s Day, a young woman in Ohio is honoring her mother who died very suddenly. But in her death, her mom saved many lives, including someone very close to their family. Josie Brown is thankful everyday to her mom for saving her boyfriend Mike’s life.
"What would I say to my mom? ‘Thank you.’ That I was proud of her. There are so many things I would want to say," Brown said.
In December, her mom Karey died suddenly from a brain aneurysm at just 46-years-old. Brown says it was no surprise that her "always willing to help" mom was a registered organ donor.
Mike Rogers had been on the waiting list for a new kidney for eight months due to complications from a genetic condition. Her family insisted Rogers receive one of Karey’s kidneys.
"It was a lot to take on. I’d rather be on dialysis still and her mom be here," Rogers said.
Two days after Karey’s death, they got the call that the kidney was a perfect match for Rogers.
"Something so good out of something so bad — it was just a true blessing," Brown said.
The transplant took place at the Cleveland Clinic.
"Mike was a little bit young for him to have this kidney failure," said Rogers’ surgeon, Dr. Alvin Wee. He says the wait time for many organs can be years, and those wait times are getting longer. "Donation is very important because it saves lives, you know, and you can do this both as a living donor and as an organ donor during the time of your passing."
Several of Karey’s other organs, including her heart and lungs, along with her corneas and skin tissue were also donated.
"She is helping those people live on," Brown said.
Brown and Rogers hope more people step up and make the same life saving decision Karey did.
"Now I get to, you know, I want to marry her and live my life with her, and I can always be thankful for her mom for that. She is really like a guardian angel," Rogers said.
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