Delores and Clay Ferguson were at Mosaic Life Care on Thursday evening to honor two loved ones on opposites sides of an organ donation as the hospital unveiled its new organ donor honor wall.
“It’s a legacy of hope and life,” Delores said. “It’s just a wall that represents those that gave. It’s an honor to have my family’s name on it.”
The new wall includes the names of organ donors, including Clay’s father, Gene Ferguson, on individual leaves on a tree. Gene passed away in 2014 and was inspired to become an organ donor by his grandson Colton, son of Delores and Clay, who received a cadaver skin graft more than 20 years ago.
“It changed our life,” Delores, a registered nurse at Mosaic, said. “It gave us hope and it gave him a life and hope for the future.”
The Fergusons were two of several dozen people at the unveiling Thursday evening. The new organ donor wall, located near the hospital’s emergency department, was funded largely by a donation from the Mosaic Life Care Auxiliary Board.
“It’s just such a tough thing for families to deal with, but it’s such a wonderful and generous gift to give the gift of life. The wall we hope will make others stop and think that this is an opportunity for me to give generously,” said Sharon Kosek, president of the auxiliary board. “Sometimes it’s a sad occurrence, but you can help others out too.”
The wall currently holds the names of donors from 2014 and 2015, and they expect to continue to add new names as families request it, said Sarah Cassity, chairperson of the organ and tissue donation committee and team leader for the emergency department.
“I truly think that it will greatly impact our caregivers as well as our donor families and the recipients,” she said. “... When an outcome isn’t as favorable as we’d prefer, it’s a nice way to go back and remember those who have given their lives to others.”
Mosaic also unveiled the third installation of the Art Experience, a collection of art work submitted by members of the community, on Thursday evening. About 65 of the 150 submitted pieces were selected to be on display for six months around the hospital. The program is a partnership between Mosaic and The Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art.
“We are excited because it has been well-received, not only by the families and patients, but by the staff, especially outside the ICU waiting room,” said Melissa Wagner, philanthropy coordinator with Mosaic. “When you are here with a loved one in the hospital, it’s very, very long days. If you can take their mind off their worry or their pain for just five minutes when they look at a piece of art ... it’s all worth it.”