The late Humboldt Broncos defenceman, Logan Boulet, is being honoured today with the first annual Green Shirt Day, aimed at spreading awareness about organ donation
Boulet lost his life one year ago today due to his injuries sustained in the Humboldt Broncos tragedy. Boulet who registered as an organ donor, saved the lives of six individuals who needed organ transplants. Reports state, following Boulet’s selfless act, the amount of people who registered to be organ donors skyrocketed and the phenomenon was quickly named the ‘Logan Boulet Effect’.
One local family, knows first-hand the life changing effects of organ donation.
Six-year-old, Kinley Hildebrandt, was just three months old when she was diagnosed with a rare liver disease, Biliary Atresia. Kinley and her family, have been on a roller-coaster ride over the last six years with hospital visits, times of increasing health and optimism, followed by a decline and the harsh realization of the depth of the situation.
There was never a question of if, Kinley would need a transplant, it was always a question of when. Despite ups and downs and a previously scheduled liver transplant assessment, she maintained well-enough health up until November 15, 2018, when she was put on the donor list following an assessment in the summer.
After waiting 107 days, Kinley’s mom, Candis, got a phone call late at night stating they had found a donor liver that was perfect match.
“It was very emotional, to look at Kinley, she looked healthy, she wasn’t jaundice and you couldn’t tell she was sick by her appearance. Going through all that we had in the years leading up to that moment, and when you get the phone call saying there is a liver for your daughter, you feel the inconceivable weight of the situation,” said Candis when recalling her thoughts surrounding the initial phone call.
Candis shared that a donor situation is a complex one, her daughter was getting a live saving gift, but she said she was also acutely aware that someones life was taken too early, in order to do so.
“The liver that a was a match for Kinley, the person who donated it was also the recipient of an organ donation, not the liver, but their family knew exactly what we were going through and, it's very emotional and it’s a lot to process,” said Candis.
Kinley is now just over one month post-operation and is recovering well. Candis shared that there are still ups and downs, which is to be expected from all that she has endured in the first six years of her life.
Candis said before this experience with Kinley, she hadn’t thought she would register to be an organ donor, however, going through what she has, knowing how immense of a gift it is to give, she has, and hopes everyone will consider registering.
107 days may seem like a long time to wait for an organ donation match, however, Candis stated that she has met numerous families who have waited years due to a shortage of people registered as organ donors.
“Organ donation means the world to us. It means my daughters body can get better, she can play with her friends, she can live life normally, she can grow old,” said Candis.
The family’s Facebook page, Kinley’s Journey with Biliary Atresia, was started to help raise awareness about the disease and Candis said she is thankful for the Logan Boulet Effect and Green Shirt Day to help raise awareness about organ donation.
For more information about Green Shirt Day or organ donation, visit greenshirtday.ca.