Skip to main content

How an Energetic Young Man’s Legacy Became a Space of Tranquility for a Community

Sarah recounts the life and loss of her son, Cameron.

God’s plan for Cameron’s life has always been in his timing.  While pregnant with Cameron, I went into labor three times before his due date.  On November 16th, 1995, Cameron was born three weeks early.  A week after bringing him home, he was hospitalized with critically high bilirubin levels.  After being in the hospital for a week, I could finally bring my baby boy home and watch him grow into an extraordinary young man.

young man with arm around mother smiles into camera

From a young age, Cameron was spontaneous, energetic, and sought adventure.  He was calculated in his decisions but challenged those around him with his high energy and lack of fear.  Cameron had his guardian angels working overtime to keep him safe!  His quest for adventure included a passion for fast toys, some of which included snowmobiles, motocross bikes, and racing remote control cars.  As you can imagine, I was one of those mothers who worried that my son would get hurt every time he was out doing the things he loved.

On the evening of June 28th, 2018 my worst fear became a reality when we received a life-changing phone call from a local sheriff.  Everything quickly unfolded before me when I arrived at the hospital that night.  It was like a bad dream.  I just wanted someone to wake me up from this nightmare.  I wanted everything to be just as it was before.  I couldn’t wake up.  It wasn’t a dream.  My son was in a car accident, and he was brain dead.  This was not what I imagined God’s plan for Cameron’s life to be.  I pictured him getting married, having children, and being a successful construction manager.  Although I was experiencing unimaginable pain, a miracle was about to take place.  Cameron was an organ donor.  Even though we were losing our son, he would give life back to others.

“Cameron was an organ donor.  Even though we were losing our son, he would give life back to others.”

Sarah, Donor Mom

As we sat in the hospital room with Cameron, the brightest rainbow we ever saw filled the sky without a sign of rain.  At that exact moment, we knew God’s plan for Cameron.  God blessed Cameron with so many wonderful characteristics, but the greatest of them was his heart.  Cameron’s heart was filled with kindness, compassion, and love, making everyone around him feel appreciated.  I can proudly say that Cameron’s heart now beats inside the chest of Jeremy, a 34-year-old man from Iowa.  I know Jeremy will continue blessing those around him because he had Cameron’s heart.

As days, weeks, months, and years continue to pass, one miracle after another has occurred through Cameron’s donations.  His life continues to bless others, and our family has found peace knowing that he continues to live on. In memory of Cameron, we continue to find ways to bring peace and healing to others.

A Space for Healing

With the arrival of COVID In 2020, we quickly learned that our community was struggling both physically and mentally. After researching what could be done to assist, we learned that research showed that nature has very powerful healing elements for the human body, mind, and soul.  With that in mind, we worked endlessly with the Fargo Parks district to create the Garden of Healing which provides a tranquil natural environment in which our community and others can find a place to reduce their stresses. Trauma has no boundaries, and it does not discriminate. The Garden of Healing is a place of comfort, hope, and healing. Hundreds from the community attended our ribbon cutting including the 5 mayors from the area and Governor Burgum.

When we started the Garden of Healing, we had no idea what impact the Garden would have on our community. Throughout time, nature has proven to be an important element in the physical and mental healing process. We have witnessed it firsthand after the completion of Phase 1.  Many community members who have visited the Garden have come to tears, healing tears.  These firsthand experiences have underscored the importance of investing in and completing Phase 2 which will offer many more healing elements including water, fire, music, lighting, and private sitting areas. We understand the Garden is not the complete solution to solve our community’s mental health epidemic, but it’s surely an important piece of the puzzle.

To learn more about Cameron and the Garden of Healing, please visit