Changing Lives Through Organ Donation
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News & Views

Widespread Media Coverage Follows Launch of “Pass Life On” Ad Campaign

January 22nd, 2015 by Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network

The Greatest Person Never Known advertising campaign


The Ad Council of Rochester and Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network, along with local health groups, have launched a new advertising campaign, “Pass Life On,” to decrease the number of individuals who die or whose health deteriorates because they are waiting for an organ transplant.

Rochester advertising agency Brand Cool lent their creative services to bring the initiative to fruition.

And the roll-out of this innovative and potentially life-saving advertising campaign has peaked the curiosity of Rochester-based media. Here is a quick “tour” of the latest media coverage:


DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE: Message of Organ Donation Shifts from Death to Life

A new campaign to encourage organ donation is shifting the message from death to life.

“We want you to live your life to the fullest,” said Rob Kochik, executive director of the Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network, “and then pass life on.” READ MORE

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#PassLifeOn: A New Advertising Campaign Promotes Organ Donor Registration

January 20th, 2015 by Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network

Organ donation advertising campaign


The call to action at a news conference at the Ad Council of Rochester this morning was “live life to the fullest, sign up on New York State’s organ donor registry,” and then “proudly use the hashtag #PassLifeOn to tell everyone you know about it and ask them to the do same!”

The goal of getting more people to enroll in the New York State Donate Life is to reduce the waiting time of people on the organ transplant list.

The drive to save more lives, aimed at residents 18 years of age and older in the Rochester region, is a collaborative effort between the Ad Council of Rochester and Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network, alongside many other community organizations including the University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester Regional Health System, Rochester Eye and Tissue Bank, National Kidney Foundation, Excellus BCBS and the Transplant Awareness Organization of Greater Rochester.

Rochester advertising agency Brand Cool donated time to develop the campaign. It features beautiful scenes and actions that coincide with a heartfelt address about “The Greatest Person Never Known,” which is what an organ donor is to someone waiting for a transplant.

Together with print advertising, a feature of the advertising push is a TV commercial, expected to start in February.

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INFOGRAPHIC: The Organ Donation Dilemma in New York State — Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Report

January 19th, 2015 by Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network


New York State adults are not as likely to register themselves as organ and tissue donors compared with other adults nationwide. But the need for life-saving organs in New York State is among the highest in the country.

This data, revealed in a report released by Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, is dramatically summarized in an infographic.



[*Microsoft account required]




Rose Parade 2015 Highlighted How Organ Donation Brought Three Families Together

January 2nd, 2015 by Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network

Rose Parade 2015 - Donate Life

The Donate Life Float made its appearance during the 2015 Rose Parade in Pasadena on January 1. The float’s theme was “The Never-Ending Story.”

In its coverage of the 2015 Rose Parade, which took place in Pasadena on a surprisingly cold New Year’s Day, Time Warner Cable News focused on the Donate Life Float, and highlighted the incredible story that brought three individuals and their families together through organ donation.

“I had no idea any of this would happen. I had no idea of the impact and the number of lives touched,” said Laurie LoMonaco.

She donated her kidney to a stranger. Ten days later, Laurie’s friend Paul Guyette suffered a fatal brain hemorrhage. Guyette’s family says it was LoMonaco’s selfless act that helped them make the decision to donate his organs.

Paul Guyette’s heart now beats inside of Gates Orlando.

Orlando, former Buffalo Sables player, rode on the Donate Life Float whose theme was “The Never-Ending Story,” tying in with the Rose Parade theme, “Inspiring Stories.”

“We saw a lot of emotions, a lot of cheering, a lot of clapping and tears. It was a float I think a lot of people were waiting to see,” said Orlando.


The parade was televised on multiple channels in the United States and worldwide. This TWC report includes video footage from NBC. 

On New Year’s Day, Global TV Audience Will See DONATE LIFE Float in Rose Parade

December 30th, 2014 by Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network

During the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena on Thursday, January 1, 2015, the Donate Life Float will be the 27th of 39 floats in the line-up. The Rose Parade will be seen by 800,000 spectators, up to 40 million U.S. television viewers, and millions more in many countries around the world.

Honorees at Rose Parade

From left: Gates Orlando, hockey legend and heart transplant recipient; Mary Guyette holding the floragraph of her husband, Paul, who was Gates’s donor; and Laurie LoMonaco, a living kidney donor. Paul is one of 72 deceased organ donors whose floragraph will decorate the Donate Life float at the 2015 Rose Parade on Jan. 1.

Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network and the University of Rochester Medical Center’s Solid Organ Transplant Program are pleased to be honoring the following people at the Rose Parade:

  • Laurie LoMonaco: Living kidney donor to a stranger. Laurie will walk alongside the Donate Life Float.
  • Paul Guyette: Deceased organ donor, represented by his loving wife, Mary, and daughters. Be sure to look for a floragraph in Paul’s likeness that memorializes him, and will adorn the float.
  • Gaetano “Gates” Orlando: Heart transplant recipient and Rochester Americans Hall of Famer. Paul Guyette was his donor. Gates will be riding on the Donate Life Float.

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  • Register as a Donor Today!

    You have the power to give life. Sign up with the New York Donate Life Registry now.

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  • Facts About Organ Donation

    • If you are sick or injured and admitted to a hospital, the FIRST PRIORITY for emergency physicians and nurses is to SAVE YOUR LIFE, regardless of whether or not you have registered to be an organ donor.
    • Everyone waiting for a transplant is treated fairly and with respect. Objective medical criteria determine how donated organs are allocated to patients on the transplant waiting list.
    • All major religions approve of organ donation.
    • Check out "10 Facts About Organ Donation"
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