Union County News

Scotch Plains Mother & Organ Donor to Walk in 2016 Rose Parade

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Donna Albanese-Demair and her mother celebrate the gift of life. Credits: John Mooney
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Roses represent different things to donors and their families, including love, loss and renewal. Credits: John Mooney
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The NJ Sharing Network is a non-profit, federally designated organ procurement organization. Credits: John Mooney
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Donna Albanese-Demair and Elisse E. Glennon, VP and Chief Administrative Officer, Executive Director, NJ Sharing Network Foundation Credits: John Mooney
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Donna Albanese-Demair with DQ employee Sasha Zitofsky and his mom, Susan, who received a kidney from her brother, who was inspired by Donna's generosity. Credits: John Mooney
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Noted transplant surgeon Dr. Stuart Geffner informed the audience about organ donations. Credits: John Valentine, NJ Sharing Network
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2016 Tournament of Roses Parade DONATE LIFE FLOAT honorees  Credits: Donna Albanese-Demair
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Donna Albanese-Demair and her parents at Dairy Queen Plainfield. Credits: Donna Albanese-Demair
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SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – On Jan. 1, a familiar face from Scotch Plains will walk alongside the 13th annual Donate Life Float in Pasadena, CA, in the 2016 Rose Parade.

Donna Albanese-Demair, owner of the Plainfield Dairy Queen, will be among the 12 individuals walking in the Rose Bowl who have donated a kidney to a family member or a stranger. She recently hosted a celebration with NJ Sharing Network and organ donors.

In 2002, as a mother of three children, Donna made a life-changing decision and underwent transplant surgery to donate a kidney to her mother, saving her life.

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“At the age of 43, I had an opportunity to reevaluate what is truly important in life.  The little stuff does not matter,” she said. “Life is precious, we must find the good in all things and when we reach out to help others we end up helping ourselves the most.”

Partnering with NJ Sharing Network, Donna continues to advocate the importance of organ donation all the while bringing a smile to faces of Dairy Queen customers right in Plainfield.

All Donate Life float sponsors encourage parade viewers to join the nation’s more than 117 million registered donors so that everyone whose life depends on a transplant may receive one. Registrations can be made through state registries, links to which can be found at www.DonateLifeAmerica.org.

Further information about the Donate Life float, decorating, and facts about donation and transplantation can be found at www.donatelifefloat.org.

Since 2004, the Donate Life Rose Parade Float has served as a memorial to organ and tissue donors and a platform for donor families, living donors and transplant recipients to inspire the world to save and heal those in need through the gift of life.

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