A 95-year-old man who recently died made history in the U.S. as the oldest organ donor when he donated his liver to a woman in need of a liver transplant.
Cecil Lockhart, of Welch, West Virginia, who died at 95 years old on May 4, became the oldest organ donor in U.S. history, the Center for Organ Recovery and Education (CORE) announced Monday.
The center coordinated the recovery of the liver, and the woman who received the liver transplant is now recovering.
Lockhart beat the previous record for the oldest organ donor, who was 93 at the time of his donation, according to the United Network for Organ Sharing.
“CORE is incredibly proud to have been able to make this historic organ donation possible,” said CORE President & CEO Susan Stuart in a news release.
“This landmark in the field of transplantation is just another example of CORE’s pioneering legacy and commitment to innovation, which, over the last 40 years, has given 6,000 people in the United States the opportunity to save more than 15,000 others as organ donors,” the statement continued.
Lockhart’s family said Cecil was inspired to become an organ donor after his son Stanley became an organ donor when he died in 2010. He healed 75 lives through tissue donation and through cornea donation, restored sight to two others.
Lockhart’s son-in-law, Bill Davis, called his late father-in-law a “giving individual.”
“Anything he could do to help people he did. And this is just a way he’s continuing to help people after his time on Earth is finished,” Davis told CNN. “If we could all be that way, I think the world would be a little bit better place for us to be in.”
At Lockhart’s funeral, his family requested everyone to register as an organ donor in his memory.
As of February, more than 107,000 people in the U.S. are on the waitlist for a lifesaving organ transplant, and 17 people die each day while on the waiting list for a transplant, according to statistics from organdonor.gov.
To register as an organ donor, all you have to do is fill out a registration form which asks for your contact information.
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