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Honoring Healthcare Heroes

Donation and transplant isn’t possible without the support of healthcare partners – doctors, nurses, technologists, EMT’s, therapists, interpreters, technicians, chaplains, and many others.

LifeSource is honored to work with incredible, dedicated healthcare professionals. We are grateful for your passion, talents and compassion. Below are messages from a few LifeSource team members in recognition of teams and individuals they work with to make donation possible.

Sanford Health

“Transplantation is a life-saving medical procedure that requires the highest level of collaboration and excellence. While working for LifeSource, Coordinators have the opportunity to work with many physicians from a variety of specialties. We work in partnership with intensivists while caring for donors, discuss suitability of organs for transplantation with radiologists, and examine the health of organs with the assistance of pathologists.”

super hero mask that says Dr. Mistry

“From the dozens of physicians and providers we interact with weekly, there is one that is repeatedly identified for his exceptional partnership and dedication. Dr. Bhargav Mistry, from Sanford Health in Fargo, is a transplant, trauma, and general surgeon. Despite his busy schedule taking care of patients in Fargo, Dr. Mistry has repeatedly made himself available for abdominal organ recoveries with LifeSource at short notice. When he assists LifeSource on a recovery surgery, he always provides excellent care for the donor, and is a wonderful partner for the LifeSource team and the surgical team at the donor hospital. Recently, Dr. Mistry assisted on a more challenging recovery, and he took the time to discuss the procedure with everyone who would be involved in the case, which not only ensured a smooth recovery, with a great outcome, but also eased any anxieties that the team may have been feeling. In particular, I have found myself grateful for his quiet advocacy for the LifeSource team as we work to fulfill our mission. During the COVID pandemic, Dr. Mistry was one of many that helped LifeSource secure some of the critically needed N95 masks, so we could continue our work. Dr. Mistry truly embodies heroism in so many different ways.”

– Kristen Adams, LifeSource Clinical Resource Supervisor II

Monument Health

Cameo Haugen is an Ambassador for LifeSource and a nurse leader at Monument Health Rapid City Hospital.

Photos of Cameo helping at events

Cameo has brought to the mission of donation a heart of gold through her advocacy to our community.  In June 2019, Cameo’s brother-in-law, Merle “Doc” Haugen became a true hero following tragedy and saved the lives of 2 women through organ donation.  He also offered healing of others through tissue donation. Cameo and Doc’s family supported Doc and his giving spirit during this most difficult time.  In early 2021, Cameo joined me, as LifeSource Ambassador, to first share her brother-in-law’s story at a donation presentation to a local group of Mother of Preschoolers (MOPS)  Following, we continued to team, advocating donation through the 2021 Donate Life 5K.  This year she thoughtfully offered to share her story at the Monument Health Donate Life Flag Raising on April 1st.  It was a beautiful event.  Her generosity of spirit and strength inspires others to consider donor designation.  Thank you Cameo for sharing the life-giving legacy of Doc’s life throughout this community and for collaborative heart for this mission.

Emily Larimer, Hospital Partner Liaison

North Memorial

“Dayna Claasen is a NTICU (5th floor) RN and has been at North for over 5 years. She KNOWS her stuff and is able to care for any patient with ease. She is a great collaborator and is easily able to build rapport with LifeSource staff and our donor families (even with complex family dynamics), and I know that if I am busy mid-case with other tasks, that when she is the nurse for my patient that my patient is receiving the best possible care. Dayna is an incredible resource at North Memorial, sometimes being a resource/float nurse that responds to situations throughout the hospital. Every time I see her on the unit, I know it will be a good day for all patients on the floor.”

hero masks with dayna and heather's names

“Heather Klemm is a HUC on NTICU. She is AMAZING and an incredible advocate for donation. Heather is the “gatekeeper” of the unit, making sure the appropriate staff and visitors are on the unit at any given time. She always has answers to my questions on where things are, how to win the fight with the fax machine, etc. Heather is also part of the Gift of Life and Sight Committee at North Memorial, and over the past few years, has helped to put together a table for donate life month/day following the theme from Donate Life (with her own money), to spread awareness for donation. Last year she set up a table each day by the waterfall in the North lobby with a poster, rocks for people to take and paint, note cards for people to fill out and write messages, and she buys blue and green ribbon for all employees to attach to their badges/uniform during their blue/green days at North that week.”

– Jarrelle Harper-Waldorf, LifeSource Donation Coordinator II

Hennepin Healthcare

“Marci is a traveling RT at HCMC – and I am always happy to see that it’s her taking care of my donors. Though Marci is a traveler, she has been at HCMC for longer than I have been at LifeSource (she just completed her THIRD winter at HCMC) – so I often joke that she is not a Minnesotan. Marci embraces the chaos that comes with working at a Level 1 trauma center, including a heavy patient load, and is often the overnight RT caring for our lung donors. She is an incredible resource at HCMC, always busts her tail, does her best to be on time in cares for our donors (which in itself is not an easy task), and is always friendly and easy to build rapport with.”

– Jarrelle Harper-Waldorf, LifeSource Donation Coordinator II

MICU staff at HCMC

“I love working with the staff at Hennepin HealthCare because they are so supportive of Donation.  They are true advocates for their patients and their families and are wonderful to work with to make donation happen.  They help save the lives of their patients and when that is not the possible they help save the lives of those waiting for that life-saving gift through donation. I am blessed to have such talented staff to work with.”

Kristi Roers, Hospital Partner Liaison

“John is an overnight ICU RN I have had the pleasure of working with a few times.  He is a wonderful communicator and is very open with me that being an ECMO nurse he may get called away at any moment. He stays in direct contact and does everything he can to set up our night for success. When John is the nurse for our donor patients, I do not have to worry about anything – John works HARD (having our donor and another patient at times) to make sure everything was done right and done on time.”

– Jarrelle Harper-Waldorf, LifeSource Donation Coordinator II

Image of PJ and LifeSource thank you to him