This past Saturday morning Raylene, her brother Craig and I headed out to Orange County to join 11,000 other participants in the annual Donate Life Walk/Run held on the campus of Cal State Fullerton. For the past five years family and friends of Scott Davis have gathered to honor his memory and help raise awareness for the Donate Life Organization. This year those making up the “Celebrating Scott Davis 2013″ team numbered 138. Afterwards an even grander event took place at the home Scott’s parents Bill and Mindy Davis, where family friends and neighbors gathered to remember and continue”Celebrating Scott.” It was an incredible day!
Two years ago I wrote a post about young Scott and the Celebrate Life event. What follows is a reprint of that posting.
“Heart of a Champion”
Early Saturday morning, April 30, 2011 Raylene, Alan and I drove out to Cal State Fullerton where we met up with a large group of family and friends for the annual Donate Life Walk/Run Family Festival sponsored by the Donate Life California Organ and Tissue Donor Registry. This is the third year the group has participated in this event to honor cousin Scott Davis who was critically injured in a skateboarding accident in June of 2008 and died after two days from severe head trauma. Through the loving generosity of his family, in death Scott was able to provided a second chance at life to five individuals through organ donations. Davis’ family donated his heart, pancreas, two kidneys and liver. Currently there are over 100,000 people waiting for life saving organ transplants. Tragically 17 people die each day because the organs they so desperately need aren’t available.
This year’s event drew nearly ten thousand people, the largest ever! I’m not exactly sure how many of us were there supporting Scott, but when we all got together for a picture, the group was huge! We all wore Donate Life tee shirts with Scott’s likeness and spent the time before the walk visiting with one another, sharing Scott stories and catching up. It was an incredible morning! After the walk, which took quite awhile because of the large crowd, many of us drove to Bill and Mindy’s home(Scott’s parents) in Huntington Beach for fish tacos and more family and friend time. A good time was had by all.
I really enjoyed visiting with family but I particularly enjoyed talking to Eric, Scott’s older brother. They were very close. He is currently doing his student teaching in Redlands. He’s teaching World History and is really enjoying himself. As I spoke with him I couldn’t help but feel his energy and excitement. I remember feeling the same way when I first started teaching. I’m no longer in the classroom, but I still feel the same way about counseling. Eric definitely has a passion for teaching and working with kids, he’s going to make a fine teacher. I know he’ll be very successful. I’m sure Scott would be quite proud of his big brother.
Scott was an incredible young man who loved life. He had the ‘heart of a champion.’ Among other things he was an avid surfer, wrestler, skateboarder and guitar player. He was busy living, and as his dad says making people happy. His last day was a full one as he reunited with three of his high school buddies who he hadn’t seen in some time. They were home from college for the summer and surprised him. They spent a good day together surfing, eating, hanging out by the pool and skateboarding. Doing what friends do. No one could have imagined that their day would end so disastrously. His death was tragic. The death of someone so young is always painful and hard to understand. But God has a plan for each of us and this was past of His plan for Scott. Perhaps the plan was for Scott to give his life so that five others might be saved. The ultimate act of nobility.
Bill and Mindy’s decision to donate Scott’s organs was an extraordinary act of compassion. As cousin Randy would say, it was”OUTSTANDING!” Their decision saved lives and carried on Scott’s practice of making people happy. There are five people out there who are extremely happy and glad to be alive, and they’re surrounded by family and friends who are also very happy. You see, Scott is still making people happy!
I hope everyone will take some time and give serious thought to becoming an organ and tissue donor. I haven’t yet, but I am considering it, I mean there must be some part of me that they could use. Through our support and contributions, we can help save lives. Scott did, so can we… Think about it…