Families remember organ donors that saved loved ones' lives

BISMARCK, N.D. - Losing someone, especially in a premature death, is something that can change everyone’s lives who once surrounded that person. At the Capitol, those who share a similar story, though organ, eye, and tissue donation came together with their families, to be remembered.

Toni Reinbold knows you can't measure the time spent with a loved one.

Her husband, Mark Vanderhoff struggled to stay hydrated, was on dialysis for 3.5 years, and needed to get a kidney transplant.

"At the age of 27 I was diagnosed with a medical condition and the medication I was given to treat the diagnosis, I had an allergic reaction to. That allergic reaction had an immediate reaction to my kidneys, and I lost both functions of my kidneys," said Vanderhoff.

That's when Vanderhoff was put on the waiting list for a donation from LifeSource and says he didn't know what life would be like without being on dialysis.

"We received the call that I was going to receive a transplant that day, it was about seven-eight hours before I was going to receive that transplant, and went into surgery," said Vanderhoff.

Reinbold says life changed after her now-husband's transplant.

"We immediately started to plan our wedding and got together with our family," said Reinbold.

But while someone is on the waiting list, another person is getting ready to become a donor.

"My granddaughter, back in 2009, passed away in a car accident, 11.5 months old. December 23, 2009 so Christmas is never going to be the same for us but she became a donor on December 24 when she passed away," said Fargo resident Chris Cantler.

Cantler says his granddaughter was able to save two lives, and enhanced up to 27 other people's lives being a donor.

"Hug your family every day, tell them you love them, because it can all change in a second. So, always remember to tell your family how much you love them," said Cantler.

CEO of LifeSource says just by putting "DONOR" on your driver's license could change many people's lives.