When a loved one dies, it’s hard for us to find acceptance and it’s nearly impossible to comprehend any good that will come out of the life altering event.


For Karen Abercrombie, her coming to terms with the sudden death of her sister, Julie, 12 years ago is slowly is occurring thanks to a very extraordinary reason.

Karen is finding peace after tragedy because the death of her sister has given 80 people the gift of life.

Her sister Julie was an organ and tissue donor.

Upon her death, her donations went on to save and enrich the lives of the many recipients, including Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer who received Julie’s career saving Achilles tendon.

It’s stories like Karen and Julie’s that have inspired a movement at Memorial Hermann--Texas Medical Center where Julie was treated more than a decade ago.

In order to decrease the gap between those who need donations (over 120, 000) and those who donate (approximately 15,000), the Texas hospital has commissioned an art exhibit called The Ultimate Gift to be displayed through 2017 in the Rick Smith Gallery at Memorial Hermann TMC.

The powerful artworks depict 17 black and white portraits by Troy Fields of donor recipients and the loved ones of the donor responsible for giving the ultimate gift.

In the portraits, we can see the connection, appreciation, and awe that exists in these people because so many chose to give the gift of life.

The actions of the donors are just one of many examples of how we can selflessly give to those who need it.

Whether it is giving time to a neighbor, sharing a few kind words, or putting some magic into the world, we are all capable of giving gifts to others that will change their lives in amazing ways.

For Julie and donors like her, what they have to offer just happens to be the ultimate gift.
How Do You Say Thank You For The Gift Of Life?
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