Death of young Tennessee organ donor gives life to many others

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A tragic accident in Ashland City came with a silver lining for a family and countless others.

Kevin Hartley, 21, collapsed while at work late last month. Years ago, his grandfather was kept alive through organ donation, an act that inspired his grandson.

Now, his mother hopes Kevin’s story will inspire others.

“He would just light up the room when he came in,” explained Wendy Hartley. “Kevin was the bomb.”

“He had been refinishing bathtubs, and was overcome by the fumes,” she also told News 2. “He was being rushed to the hospital. I actually made it to Southern Hills before the ambulance got there.”

Doctors performed a CT scan after Kevin collapsed and found he had no brain activity. But CPR provided by his brother Michael hours earlier made it possible to harvest his organs. Kevin’s last wish would soon be fulfilled.

Family and friends gathered at TriStar Centennial Medical Center, reading a letter to surgeons just before surgery, describing the young donor.

“Kevin is a wonderful person and will be missed by all his friends and family. We are so happy he has the opportunity to continue to bless the lives of so many, as he always has.”, concluded the letter.

Kevin donated tissue, parts of bone, kidneys, lungs, and his heart.

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If you wish to become a Tennessee organ donor please register here.

Source: WKRN
Photo source: WKRN