Transplantation is a remarkable thing, giving hope to a patient and
loved ones when there is no other source of
hope. When Gary needed a heart transplant, we were for
tunate to come under the care of a group of doctors and nurses whose
dedication, humor, excellence, intelligence, and compassion were unsurpassed.
We know how committed they were to the life of their patients, and in particular
to Gary's life. We also know that they share our disappointment and sorrow
that the results for Gary were not all that we hoped for. They gave us
two years with Gary that we would never have had and for that we are eternally
Gary accomplished a good deal in those two years and we shared many
funny, tender and wonderful times with him.
Nothing that these remarkable doctors and nurses could have done for
Gary was left undone, but we could all do something for others whose lives
depend, until there are other and better options, on donor organs. Now
desperately ill people wait until they are near death in order to have
priority for the next available organ, un-
necessarily compromising the ultimate outcome. Or they are forced to
Hobson's choices, so close to death that they accept less than perfect
donations for a chance at life, as was the case with Gary. Gary and Jeanne
talked many times about the choice they faced in the perilous and uncertain
circumstances in which they found them-
selves on April 15, 1998, and knew with utter confidence that they
would make the same choice again. However, if more organs were available,
such choices might be averted, more would be helped, perhaps sooner and
so with better outcomes.
We urge you to consider becoming an organ donor. Donor cards are available.
The card is
not enough, however. If you would consider taking this step, you must
tell your loved ones clearly about your wishes, or better yet, execute
a medical directive that sets out your wishes. As a gift in honor of Gary,
the legal staff at the Hale and Dorr Legal Services Center will provide
you with the appropriate documents and infor-
mation. The New England Organ Bank, One Gateway Center, Newton, MA
02458, is also an excellent resource. Organ transplantation is not a cure,
but it is a chance, and many recipients live productive lives for ten,
fifteen or even more years.
Thank you all for the great kindness and sympathy that have been extended
to us. We know that hundreds and hundreds of students, friends and colleagues
are grieving with us. Gary would not miss any opportunity to make things
better, in whatever large or small way. It is in the spirit of his life
and values, therefore, that we bring this request to you.
Fred and Helaine Gould
Frank Handelman andBonnie Bellow
Jack and Cheryl Grennan
All the nieces and nephews