Gift of Life
MILWAUKEE - You'd never know it by looking at Louanne Haase, but she is in deep mourning. Her daughter Monica died on New Years Day. But Monica's death saved one Milwaukee man's life...
TODAY'S TMJ4 first introduced you to Kenneth Williams in November of 2005. His wife Carrie had just donated one of her kidneys to him, but even after that transplant, the diabetes that had destroyed Kenneth's kidneys was ravaging another part of his body.
Two years after his kidney transplant, Kenneth's life was on the line again. He now needed a pancreas transplant, and without it, doctors told him he would die. But no pancreas was available. And even if there was it would be a roll of the dice to find a suitable match.
But what Kenneth didn't know was that the miracle he needed was just a few miles west in Waukesha County. Louanne Hasse told reporter Shelley Walcott about the day her daughter Monica decided to become an organ donor:
"She said, 'Mom, where do you get the sticker from? I want to donate too.' And she did go to the motor vehicle department, and she did get the sticker."
After signing up to be an organ donor, a cruel twist of fate for Monica: The beautiful dental assistant, who so eagerly signed up to be an organ donor, died. It was just one day before her 30th birthday. Doctors in the ER gave her mother the news, and then Louanne was approached by the organ transplant team. With Louanne's blessing they harvested Monica's lungs, kidneys, liver, skin and corneas. And on Monica's birthday, Kenneth received her pancreas. It was the life saving operation he had prayed for.
The operation was a success. Kenneth met Monica's mother at the TMJ4 studios to say thank you. His words comforted Louanne, who now knows more than ever that her daughter's life was not lost in vain.
If you would like more information on how to become an organ donor, please visit the Wisconsin Donor Network's Web site by clicking on the link under related content.