April 2, 2017


Dear Loved Ones of my Special Angel,

My name is Lydia and I am a cheerleader. Since I was a little girl, I have loved to cheer for my school as well as the highly competitive All-Star cheerleading. A few months ago, I travelled to another state to do what I love, compete against the best cheerleaders in the country.  Just a few short minutes before I was about to take the stage, I performed a very difficult stunt in warm-ups and severely tore my ACL.  A few days ago, I had major surgery to repair my ACL and I hope to someday return to the sport I love.

Lydia-Voutourweb.jpgIt was during surgery that my angel came to help, your loved one. My doctor was going to use my hamstring tendons to build a new ACL. However, my hamstrings were not large enough to perform the surgery properly, giving me the best chance to cheer again someday.

I am writing to thank you for the most thoughtful, kind and generous donation of tissue from your loved one. I am so sorry for your loss, but I wanted you to know that your loved one’s generosity has changed my life in more ways than one. He or she has given me the chance to return to my passion but more importantly, I have decided that I will be a donor as well so that I can pay your kindness forward someday. Who knows, maybe I will help another cheerleader!!

My dad and mom have always stressed the important of organ and tissue donation and they are both donors themselves. I never had the opportunity to meet my grandmother and perform for her because she needed an organ donation many years ago and she died before she found her angel. I was lucky I found mine and I will be forever grateful.

I wish I could thank you in person but I realize the program’s success depends on anonymity. My family and I will always remember your kindness and generosity. Next time you see a cheerleader I hope you will think of your loved one and smile to the heavens!  God Bless!