Heart transplant recipient signs up organ donors

Posted: Updated:
BLAUVELT -

A heart transplant recipient who given the gift of life is now encouraging students at Dominican College in Blauvelt to sign up to help save a life.

Lauren Shields and other students are set up inside Granito Center until 6 p.m. today with a goal to sign up 250 people on Organ Donor Enrollment Day.

Shields was just 9 years old when she found out she needed a heart transplant. "I just caught a virus that attacked my heart and suddenly went into heart failure." Thankfully, after waiting only a month and a half she found out she was getting a heart.

But not everyone is as lucky. In New York, most patients wait three to five years, according to Live on New York,  a nonprofit organization that’s helps with organ and tissue donation.  Sadly, Live on New York says that every 18 hours, someone in the U.S. dies waiting for an organ.

That's why Shields, now a freshman in college, is encouraging students and staff at Dominican College to sign up to be an organ donor - to help save a life. "My life was saved by an organ donor and I wouldn't be here today if it weren't for that person so I feel that because my life was saved it is my duty to give back."

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