Wall Of Life - Bobb - Fifty Lives

Tissue Donor

From the minute we met, Bobb and I had a connection like no other. His fun-loving, joke-cracking, eternally playful self-balanced my no-nonsense, all business, serious self perfectly. We figured out almost immediately that we were going to be together forever. Only, forever wasn’t as long as I had imagined. Bobb dreamed of being a firefighter since he was a little boy – plastic fire helmets and firetruck birthday cakes dominated his childhood. When he was 22, his dream started to became a reality, and he started working as a part-time volunteer firefighter for the department in the community where we lived. At the age of 25, in December of 1997, Bobb was able to begin working as a full-time firefighter. For the next few weeks, he was living his dream, and he was happy!

On January 12, 1998, at 7:00 in the morning, Bobb was working on the scene of an accident. He and another firefighter were preparing a vehicle for transport when a car lost control on black ice, striking a police officer, another firefighter, and Bobb. The police officer and Bobb were killed instantly. My world shattered.

The moment I entered the Emergency Room that morning will forever be etched in my mind. While I was told immediately that Bobb had been in an accident and he didn’t survive his injuries, I knew almost as immediately what Bobb would want. An incredible calm fell over me, and I told the nurses to bring me the paperwork to sign to donate anything they needed from him. There wasn’t even a question in my mind. This is exactly what Bobb would have wanted.

Within moments, Bobb was able to give a final gift to his community. He gave the Gift of Life, and I haven’t regretted this decision even 20 years later. I continue to see this Final Act as not only a gift to the community, but it is also a gift to me. I know that Bobb lives on in the people he was able to help, and selfishly, I find immense comfort and beauty in that.

I guess forever just looks different to some. To me, this forever is still beautiful.