Skip to main content

BC’s oldest organ donor at 79, just a few months shy of turning 80 years old

Sisters Kary and Barb said their parents had very strong feelings about everyone in the family registering as organ donors. Their dad Bob, had a close friend who received a heart transplant so they knew firsthand the impact organ donation could have.
Use this image as both the current Page Image and for News listings

                          ​Barb and Kary with their dad, Bob

​"When registering for organ donation first became available in BC with your driver's license, my mom called and told me – not asked me – to register," Barb shares. As a family, they agreed it was the right thing to do.

After Bob's accident, a doctor asked their mom Alice if she would consider organ donation. She asked if Bob would be too old to donate and the doctor suggested moving ahead with testing to find out. As a family, Barb says they were so grateful he asked.

Barb and Bob.jpg

                                        Barb with her dad, Bob

"Dad would be so proud, as are we all, that he lived life and was able to pass it on. It is heartwarming to see his story being shared by friends and through this community," says Barb.
An interview with Bob's daughter, Kary

When did your dad donate his liver?

My dad became an organ donor in 2014 when he was just a few months shy of turning 80 years old. He was a large guy at 6'3" with broad shoulders and unfortunately, there weren't recipient matches big enough to accommodate his heart and lungs even though they could be donated. His kidneys were healthy too but they were not eligible at the time.  

How do you feel about your dad being the oldest donor in BC?

I love the message he provides in his gift. As a BC Transplant volunteer, I often hear people say they are too old to register as donors so it is great to be able to say my dad was 79 when he became a donor.

How has the donation journey impacted your family?

Volunteering at BC Transplant with my mom has brought a richness to us as a family. We are very proud to be volunteers.

How has the donation impacted you as sisters?

I think it has brought us closer. We have a common ground that has brought up quite a few family discussions that may not have come about if it wasn't for this.

            Kary and Bob Photography and Fishing.jpg

                                         Kary with her dad, Bob

Tell us one thing you want the world to know about your dad.

He was kind and compassionate. He really believed in volunteering, helping the community and helping friends in need. I know he would have been happy to know that his organs were able to save a life.

Tell us about your dad's fishing and photography hobbies. What did he specifically love about it?

He was also creative but in a detail oriented way. He took beautiful photos but was also very skilled at Photoshop and was quite adept at mending old photos that had been damaged or torn. He had a great eye.

Dad loved to get away from it all, and fishing fit into that. He was very outdoorsy: skiing, fishing, biking and working outdoors. He was a very active man.

I have been fortunate to be able to speak at BC Transplant's annual donor medal ceremony about our family's experience with organ donation. I remember a time when a donor family member came up to me afterward and told me, "Your dad is someone I would have loved to go fishing with."
SOURCE: BC’s oldest organ donor at 79, just a few months shy of turning 80 years old ( )
Page printed: . Unofficial document if printed. Please refer to SOURCE for latest information.

Copyright © BC Transplant. All Rights Reserved.

    Copyright © 2024 Provincial Health Services Authority