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How Turn The Paige Foundation Began

Paige Renay Corbell

Paige Renay Corbell

Turn The Paige Foundation was founded in November, 2009 in loving memory of Paige Renay Corbell.  Paige’s Promise is a renewal of her strong commitment to organ donor registry and our willingness to carry through on this promise.  Paige sounded the alarm, long before her death, that there weren’t nearly enough donors in Texas.  She informed us of a snafu at state level which caused the loss of the database containing registered donors. 

Paige also proudly claimed to be the second person in the state of Texas to register under the Glenda Dawson Bill, which did effectively consolidate the databases for organ donor registry.

Our beloved Paige passed away on October 24, 2009.  With Paige’s passing, seven others got the gift of additional time.  Two children received her kidneys – one a 12 year old girl, the other a 14 year old boy.  Both are doing very well.  A woman in her early 40’s, a mother of 3, got time with her precious children.  A 62 year old man got her lungs, unfortunately he has since passed due to an unrelated illness.  People in El Paso and Odessa received corneal transplants and a little girl of 7 received her long beautiful hair that was made into a wig by Locks of Love.

Paige Renay Corbell

Paige’s Promise

Please know that going through the loss of someone you love in this way is one of the most horrific things in the world.  You look at the person you have loved all their lives, watching them breathe and yet knowing that they are no longer really there.  The reality is that in that nightmare of a moment, the only thing that you can begin to comfort yourself with is the knowledge of the all encompassing love and compassion they have shown to others, even at the this, the time of their death.  I am so incredibly proud of Paige and what her compassion has inspired.  She taught us all the true depth of a soul, the willingness to give yourself completely to others and offer them life.  The only way I could have survived this tragedy was to do my best to honor her and leave her with the sort of legacy that most of us never have.  One that says her life made a difference to others.

When we began this process there were only 432,338 donors in the entire state.  A state that boasted a population of 24.4 million people.  Less than 2 percent of this booming population are registered due to a loss of a consolidated database.  106,000 people are on the national transplant list today, over 11,000 of these are Texans.  17 people sitting on the transplant list die every day.  110 new names are added to the national transplant list every day.  We couldn’t even begin to comprehend the magnitude of the long shot chance that any of these people had to receive the gift of a full life.

We started out hoping to raise numbers in the state and to educate people about the wonderful gift of life they can possibly offer to others.  Our goal was to help with questions, misconceptions and the scope of things possible through organ donor registry.

In the past two and a half years, we have helped raised numbers by almost 2 million, taking the percentages from 1.89% to 10%.   We want to help raise awareness, get organ donation and donor registry into our health or science curriculums teaching kids about decisions we can make to help others, encourage all ethnicities to consider registering because of the ability to cross match to type, educate and assist the public with their ability to make limited or broad scope decisions about organ donation registration.  In 2012, we hope to raise enough money to create a public service ad to be shown on television stations around the state.  Our immediate goal is to help raise the donor registry percentages to 25% of the population.  Our long term goals are to be able to financially and otherwise assist transplant recipient families while they go through the process of transplantation; create chapters of the Turn The Paige Foundation on college campuses around the state and make ourselves available for special needs such as addressing trauma professionals about approaching families and dealing with their terrific sense of horror and loss, talking to individuals in the judicial system about the impact they can have and working with student groups on education about donor registry.