Mother and son who died in Arizona save lives through organ donation

Local News

As a Maui family mourns the death of a young mother and her son, they find comfort that the tragedy is able to help other families.

Through organ donation, the woman and child are making a big difference in other people’s lives.

Reene Kawaauhau and her son Patrick were killed while she was driving home on an Arizona roadway. Their organ donations are saving the lives of seven people.

It’s been just over a week since 30-year-old Reene Kawaauhau and her son were killed while coming home from Patrick’s baseball game. Her family is still finding it hard to accept that they’re gone.

“She was the baby, the second youngest in the bunch and she still had her whole life ahead of her,” said Trish Kawaauhau, Reene’s sister.

Reene and her husband have six other children and the thought of their future without their mother is just as difficult.

“They’re all young, they’re babies themselves and they gotta continue this life without their mommy,” said Trish.

She’s learned that her sister made an important decision a while back to be an organ donor along with her son. And because of that, seven people will get a new lease on life.

“Even though they’re not here the come back was that they gave other people a life to live. So that’s something to look at you know,” she said.

It’s a message that organizations like Legacy of Life Hawaii would like more people to know.

“Organ donation saves lives. When families in Hawaii say yes to donation, people in Hawaii are saved through organ transplant. There’s no greater gift,” said Felicia Wells-Williams, director of clinical services at Legacy of Life Hawaii.

It’s not something people think about ahead of time. And some might be hesitant because of fears that their body would not be treated properly.

“It occurs in a hospital, in an operating room by trained nurses and doctors and other healthcare professionals. So individual’s bodies are always treated with the utmost respect,” said Wells-Williams.

You can register online to be on organ donor through Legacy of Life. Here’s the link:

Family and friends of Reene Kawaauhau have set up a fundraiser through this link:

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