Dec 10, 2011 11:54 PM by Chris Welty

Tornado Victim's Mom Reflects on the Gift of Life

Losing a loved one, especially a child is never easy. The ultimate gift the gift of life, makes it easier for families to know their loved one is making a difference in someone else's life.

"I tried to find a way to keep my child here forever."

Cathy Guidry and her family never knew about the Louisiana Organ Procurment Agency or L.O.P.A. until her daughter passed away and she was approached to donate her daughter's organs.

"In a mother's minds, my first thoughts were I wanted her to be able to live forever, but to find that way was through LOPA and her being an organ donor," said Guidry.

Just nine months ago, Guidry's daughter, 21 year old Jalisa Granger died after a tree crashed through the home that she and her 15-month old son was in when a tornado hit Rayne.

"We can go to the gravesite and he recognizes where he's at, he knows where she is at, and there are times he does ask for her, mommy, and that's what he calls her...mommy," said Guidry.

Just like the Granger family story, each family remembers their loved one and the lives that are now changed by hanging an ornament on the Tree of Life.

"Jalisa was the kind that would always smile, and she loved taking pictures. She was a camera person, she touched a lot of lives through that same smile," said Guidry.

Ornaments and the Tree of Life helping families cope and give new life to those that have given the ultimate gift and to those that have received.

Chris Welty



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