Saturday, September 28, 2013

Life From Death

I've been reminded the past few days of how quickly life can be lost. On Thursday night, the brother of a friend and co-worker, Carolyn Blake, in Lebanon, Tennessee passed away, a man whose nephew and niece sat in my classes. Last night, my dentist for thirteen years, Dr. Steve Thaxton, also from Lebanon, Tennessee, was killed in a motorcycle accident. The children of Steve and his lovely wife, Brenda, also sat in my classes at that same Christian school. The following is about a young lady I never met but from what I read in her obituary, I wish I had. It is from July 11, 2009.


Michaela Leigh Thomas
Melbourne, Florida resident, 21

Michaela Leigh Thomas, 21, of Melbourne, Fla., died at Holmes Regional Medical Center in Melbourne, June 28, 2009. She was born March 1, 1987 in Lansthul, Gemany. Her parents are Mike and Pellie Thomas and Kathy and William Yockey. She was a May graduate of Florida State University with a Bachelor of Science degree. She was active in Calvary Chapel and Relay For Life. Surviving are her parents, Mike and Pellie Thomas and William and Kathy Yockey; brother, David Thomas; grandparents, Al and Judy Thomas. Funeral services were held July 3, 2009 at Davis-Seawinds Funeral Home in Melbourne, Fla., with Cleave S. Frink officiating.


From the Ashes: Michaela Thomas was a 21-year-old woman who had just graduated from Florida State University in May. If she was laughing, you were laughing too, an infectious smile and a personality that allowed her to comfort people she didn’t even know. Michaela was set to start her masters degree at the University of Central Florida in August, but she died after being in a car accident on June 28. I am her father. She always took the outcast and unpopular and befriended them. She was the light in a dark room and had incredible talent, tireless work ethic and limitless potential. She was adamant about being an organ donor, her body was in perfect condition after the accident, her organs and tissues helped over 40 people to live even as she died. As my wife and I sat on the hotel patio watching the helicopters coming and going, whisking my little girl’s organs to people in desperate need, tears were rolling down our faces. I imagine there were 40 people with tears of joy rolling down their faces as their prayers for life giving organs were answered. My baby girl found a way to give comfort in life and life from death. Please become an organ donor . . . the life you save may be somebody you can’t live without.

The obituary above was in my hometown newspaper on Thursday. I could not find any connection between the young lady and York, Nebraska but there must have been one. I was struck by several things. The first was a remarkable likeness to one of my former students. Another would be the brevity of life for this wonderful young lady. The third was the heartfelt plea by her father for any reader to become like his little girl and declare themselves to be an organ donor. In her death, she brought life to others. Many families are eternally grateful she did. I can't comfort her family in their grief but I can do this: I can pass on the example of Michaela. The rest is up to us.

PS: Ten days after this ran, I received a very nice note from her mom- someone had forwarded the piece to the family. The connection to my hometown was that many of her relatives on her dad's side were from York.

God bless,
Steve
Luke 18:1
E-mail me at steve@hawleybooks.com

No comments: