Maggie Caraway was a 15-year-old known for her positive attitude and her giving spirit. “Maggie’s strongest desire was to help others,” says her mom, Kimberly. “Throughout her life she loved giving to others. She gave gifts to teachers and friends for special occasions or sometimes, just because.”
Tragically, Maggie unexpectedly passed away on April 15, 2019. Just one month before her death, Maggie registered to be an organ donor when she received her drivers permit. Her mom says it is a decision Maggie made without hesitation.
“On the day of her passing, we received a call about donating Maggie’s corneas,” says Kimberly. “Without question we said yes, knowing the opportunity to restore someone’s eyesight would be her greatest gift of all.”
Maggie’s generosity allowed two people to receive corneal transplants. The recipients wrote Kimberly to thank her for the gift of restored eyesight. Frank, a grandfather who has struggled with his sight for over 20 years, told Kimberly, “The gift your daughter gave me will always be appreciated.”
Maggie’s unselfish gift even had a global impact. Rhengu, a mom in China who was unable to work after losing her vision, says, “Your daughter is so beautiful, kind, and generous. Without her donation, I wouldn’t have my present life and would continue to live in the dark.”
Though the pain of losing her youngest child is still extremely difficult, Kimberly treasures her memories of Maggie. “She wasn’t a chatty teenager, but she was wise beyond her years,” Kimberly says. “My favorite memory is when she was elected freshman maid in homecoming court. She was beautiful as she was escorted by her father. Maggie was so happy in that moment. It was breathtaking.”
Kimberly takes comfort knowing Maggie is seeing the world through the eyes of her cornea recipients. “I know Maggie is smiling from heaven because God allowed her to give one last gift. She is now seeing the beauty of the world through the eyes of others,” Kimberly says.
Kimberly views organ, eye, and tissue donation as a way to give one of life’s greatest gifts. “To me, donating an organ is one of the ultimate gifts you can give,” she says. “If someone else may benefit from something you have, then why not?”
You can make a difference by registering to be an organ, eye, and tissue donor at www.advancingsight.org or use the Health app on your iPhone.
Help others today by making a financial gift to Advancing Sight Network. As a nonprofit organization, we appreciate the support of our community to help restore sight. Give today at www.advancingsight.org/give-financially.