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Virtual Donor Wall Comes to Rochester

Developing traveling exhibit will recognize, honor organ and tissue donors

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

The director of the National Donor Memorial, a project of the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), will unveil a traveling exhibit honoring organ and tissue donors on Friday at the offices of Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network, the region’s organ procurement organization.

The Virtual Wall is a traveling presentation that includes names of organ and tissue donors, and resembles a wall that has been constructed at the National Donor Memorial site in Richmond, Va., says Fred Geiger, director of the National Donor Memorial. The virtual wall of names will travel around the country for ceremonies at organ procurement organizations and transplant centers, and can also be shown through exhibits.

The National Donor Memorial project will be the first permanent memorial dedicated to those who gave the gift of life by donating organs or tissue. It contains the Wall of Tears and Water Garden, the Memorial Grove and eventually the Butterfly Lawn. Additionally, there is a website,, which can be accessed for both virtual tours of the garden and for the creation of memorial tributes to donors.

A focus group, the only one planned before the virtual wall project proceeds, will be held Friday afternoon, giving local donors, recipients, organ procurement staff, transplant surgeons and nurses the opportunity to see the work-in-progress and offer feedback.

“We are honored that UNOS chose Rochester as the site to give feedback on the virtual wall,” says Robyn Kaufman, executive director of Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network. “We are pleased to support a project that honors the sacrifice of donors and donor families and the difference donation makes in the lives of others.”

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Karin Christensen

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