Marit and Paige were childhood friends who shared a passion for art, philosophy, and Converse sneakers. Marit observed her classmate in Grade 12 struggle with the extra medication she had to take because of a liver transplant she underwent as a youngster.

Marit became more aware of the necessity of transplantation as a result of this experience, and she decided to make organ transplants the topic of her senior group project at school. She became even more motivated when she learned that 346 Canadians died while waiting for organ donors in 2012, and 4,529 people were on the transplantation waitlist.

Marit asked her mother, Susan, to approve her organ donor card when she was 17 years old. She was underage to provide legal approval at the age of 17.

Unfortunately, on January 28, 2013, Marit died unexpectedly. This once joyful and healthy student at the University of Calgary died from a pulmonary embolism.

In the aftermath of their youngest child’s death, Bruce refused to donate Marit’s organs when requested. Bruce and Susan consented to organ donation after an open discussion, accepting Marit’s desires.

Marit’s heart, pancreas, liver, and kidneys were all donated in 4 different procedures thanks to the Mckenzies’ unselfish choice. Following successful cornea transplants, 2 persons were given the privilege of eyesight, and tendons and bone tissue were saved and used for multiple surgeries at a future stage.

In honor of Marit, more than $22,550 was collected for the Foundation from February 1 to March 31.

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