Heart recipient meets family of donor

- Carol Wright, from Wisconsin, was close to dying two years ago, and she desperately needed a heart. She got one.  The heart belonged to the beautiful daughter of Chris and Laura Dawkins, of Orlando.  "I know she's looking down and proud of the gift she was able to give," says Laura. 

On a February day at Orlando International Airport, Carol would get the opportunity to meet the Dawkins Family.  "I can't wait to hear her heart. I can't wait to put my ear on her chest and hear my daughter's heart," Laura explains. 

On February 23, 2014, as 19-year-old University of Central Florida sophomore Brooke Dawkins crossed Alafaya Trail near campus, she was struck by a vehicle. She suffered traumatic brain injury.  Doctors at Orlando Regional Medical Center declared her clinically dead after 10 days in intensive care. 

Brooke was a registered organ donor, and her family honored her wish. Both of her corneas, her kidneys, pancreas, liver, and heart all gave others great gifts. No one appreciates that more than Carol. 

The Dawkins Family invited Carol back to Orlando to see where Brooke grew up.  They looked at her artwork, her writings, and her pictures.  They discussed the mission of organ donation awareness, the cornerstone of BrookeStrong.org. "I needed to know that they were going to like me and that I was going to be someone who would take care of my heart, take care of Brooke's heart."

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