40 Force: Donation Day – A Donor Story
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Saving lives through organ donation – that’s what the 40 Force is focused on tonight.
Every 10 minutes, another name is added to the organ transplant waiting list, but many times, the names you don’t hear about are the men and women who are the donors.
People like Jeff Leporati from West Springfield.
Teresa Leporati is her son Jeffrey’s biggest fan, as any mother would be. From the very day he was born, there was just something special about him.
He was – in a word – thoughtful, like the time right after the October surprise snowstorm hit western Mass. back on Halloween 2011.
“He had worked all day long, he was walking home and saw somebody shoveling out their car and he stopped and helped this person….had no idea who they were. You know, that’s just the kind of kid he was,” explains Teresa Leporati.
Less than a month later, Jeffrey Leporati was on life support. He was hit by a car on Route 20 in West Springfield just before Thanksgiving.
“In the hospital, they were wonderful. They were very honest from the get-go in letting us know that he probably was not going to survive and I just said ‘If he does not make it, I want him to be an organ donor. He’s a 21 year old, healthy young man. Let him help other people.”
Seems thoughtfulness runs in the family.
In Jeff’s tragic death, his mom saw the opportunity to give life to others and in one final surprise, Jeffrey committed yet another act of random kindness.
Turns out – the young man with the big heart was already a registered organ donor.
“…Went through the whole process with the nurse and come to find out he had signed up himself when he was 19. We talked to his girlfriend afterwards and she told me that they had talked about it and it was very important to him.”