Parents of Organ Donor Share Their Son's Story
Steve Adubato goes on-location to the NJ Sharing Network 30th Anniversary Gala to talk with Ezequiel and Iris Garcia about their son Reinaldo, who gave the gift of life through donation in 2011. These parents explains how his gift has given their life meaning again.
"It is an honor to speak to these two very special people right here. Ezequiel Garcia's wife Iris, the father and the mother of the young man, Reinaldo Garcia, who gave the Gift of Life to so many others. He didn't have to do that. You didn't have to do that. Can you talk a little bit about it Iris? When my son passed my son called me to go to the hospital, and he told me that New Jersey Sharing... not New Jersey Sharing, there are counselors in Clara Maass, they wanted to speak with me about organ and tissue donation, and they told me, "Mommy remember that Ray was always telling that he believed in organ donation." So it was easy for me in that matter because I didn't have to decide by myself. My son decided before I go in. Mr. Garcia, in many ways, your son...? By the way, talk about your son. What kind of person was he? Well he was a loving person. He was a very active. He was involved in sports. He was involved in... Was he a phys ed teacher? Yes he was. He... but we are teachers also, so he wanted to be a teacher like his dad and his mother, and he did, and by the time of his passing, he was working at Science Park High School in Newark, but he was also involved in sports. He was a baseball player. He participated in the Roberto Clemente Little League in Newark, and when... It's a great little league in Branch Brook Park? Yeah... yes. Yes. Yes. And he working as... I was his coach when he was in tee-ball. You're a baseball family? [laughter] Yes. Yes. Yes we are. Because our three boys were also involved in baseball also. And when he passed, he was an instructor, that we didn't know, he was teaching young people how to be good players. He loved play. He was very active. And he was involved in everything. So he makes that decision, you're there with him, with your family, what message would you want to send to everyone watching right now? I mean, we're at the 30th... this is the 30th Anniversary of the New Jersey Sharing Network. This is their annual gala at the Liberty Science Center in beautiful downtown... not downtown, but in Jersey City. What would you say to everyone watching right now who respect you...? So much respect for your son Reinaldo, but say, "Well I couldn't do that." You say? I never said, "I couldn't do that," because he wanted to do it. And I would tell the..."