Finding Help for Yourself or a Loved One:
Counseling and support services can be a guide through some of the challenges of grieving as a person adjusts to their loss. Grief support and counseling can be provided by professionals. Self-help groups are often available and are there for participants to support one another.
The San Antonio Eye Bank Donor Family Quilt is an opportunity to honor and remember donors and allow transplant recipients to express their gratitude for the gift of sight. Organizations across the country use quilts as a visual display of how lives are touched by donation and transplantation.
Our immense gratitude to J Larry Beauchamp and Marilyn Bellows of the Greater San Antonio Quilt Guild for their dedication and volunteerism to our program. The beauty of their support lives on after their deaths in every quilt blanket they loving stitched. Our appreciation to Lion Kathryn Voorhees Bellamy for volunteering to maintain the program.
Local cornea and eye donor families and transplant recipients are invited to contribute a patch to the quilt. The quilt is never finished, patches are always accepted. Click here to learn more about how to participate.
Death and grief spare no one and are normal life events. All cultures have developed expectations and norms about coping with death. It is important to understand someone else’s loss from the perspective of the cultural and family traditions unique to that individual.
When people are grieving, thoughts and emotions are often heightened. People who care about the bereaved are often unsure how to be helpful; they do not know what to say or do. The primary and most important thing to do is to show that you care by being present and by listening and supporting family and friends who are grieving. Offering advice or suggestions is not needed; try to become comfortable with quietly supporting a person with your presence.
There is no right way to grieve and mourn. Be very careful not to impose your ideas, beliefs and expectations on someone else, no matter how much you think it might help.
The following are some suggestions of ways you can support a grieving friend or family member:
(bereavement wording provided by Caring Connections, a program of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization,)
The decision to write to a transplant recipient is a very personal one.
As a family member of a donor, you may or may not decide to write a note to the transplant recipients. It is your personal choice. If you decide to write, here are some suggestions:
After you have completed your letter or card, place it in an unsealed envelope.
Attn: Donor Family Correspondence
San Antonio Eye Bank
9150 Huebner Road, Suite 105
San Antonio, Texas 78240
We are proud to share photos and biographies of donors heroes and their living legacies as disclosed by family members.
Corporal Jose Luis “Speedy” : Honored and Remembered
Corporal Jose Luis "Speedy" Espericueta Jr. made the ultimate sacrifice while performing his duty to serve and protect. He died a hero and his family supported his decision as a registered donor, to continue helping after death, as a cornea and tissue donor.
His most notable professional accomplishments included rescuing an elderly man from a burning house, saving two young children who were locked in a car, apprehending multiple armed suspects in a home invasion incident, appearing in A&E's Live PD and National Geographic's Border Wars.
His family and friends will remember him for having a sarcastic sense of humor, being an avid BBQer who greatly enjoyed a cold Miller Lite beer, a loyal diehard Dallas Cowboys fan, and for his great love for his family.
Madison and Tanner: Honored and Remembered
Madison's wit and her dry sense of humor could make anyone laugh.
She was conscientious, kind and enjoyed surprising others with thoughtful deeds. She was a senior at Jourdanton High School and had been accepted into Sam Houston University where she wanted to study medicine. Madison exemplified her belief of serving others by choosing to register to become a donor when she received her driver's license.
Tanner was a tender-hearted soul who loved the great outdoors. Whether fishing for catfish on the Brazos River, white bass on the Trinity River, or hunting with family and friends, he was never happier than when he was outdoors. Tanner was an honor roll student and a member of the Kindness and Compassion Club at Jourdanton Elementary School. He was known for his politeness and befriending those who were without friends. His selflessness continued in his death by being a cornea donor.
#spreadkindnessforMandT is a movement to promote acts of kindness in honor of Madison and Tanner, siblings that died from injuries sustained in a car accident. The family asks that if you witness or perform an act of kindness, post a photo or remarks of the act on social media with the hashtag #spreadkindnessforMandT