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In 2012, Dawn Decaminada was unexpectedly called to the hospital and notified that her father had suffered two brain aneurisms. She had never considered the type of conversations she would need to have when her tough police officer father’s medical outlook was not well. And she had no idea that one of her signatures that day could change the life of a stranger she had not met. But she came from a family that understood the value of organ donation — her mother had received two kidney transplants. 

When Dawn’s father’s aneurism burst, he died in her arms, which she somberly felt was an answer to her prayers as it was the way he would’ve wanted to go. His eyes and his skin were the only two things he was able donate due to the fact that he was a smoker for the majority of his life. Since learning about Lions Eye Institute, Dawn’s become a strong supporter of LEITR’s mission.

When asked what she felt her father would want to share to those reading, Dawn says “I think that if my dad knew that he could change someone’s life the way that he did, he would probably want to take better care of himself. He had no idea he was leaving a legacy and changing a life. He’s inspired me and my husband to think about taking better care of ourselves, and to leave a legacy to help others have a better life.”