(LOS ANGELES – Dec. 21, 2020) — An organ donor from Moreno Valley will be among those honored by OneLegacy and Donate Life as part of the Tournament of Roses 2021 TV special, “The Rose Parade’s New Year Celebration presented by Honda.” The local donor, Xavier Kesan Brown, passed away at 13 months old. His family chose to donate his liver, lungs, pancreas, both kidneys and small intestine.
Xavier’s mother, Kayla Fouse, said that donating her son’s organs was the best decision she ever made for him and for her family.
“It takes love and sacrifice to make the decision to donate organs, but it’s the greatest gift anyone could ever give, and I am proud that my son was able to do that,” said Fouse. “While he is not physically here with us, there’s a piece of him still here helping others make memories he wasn’t able to make with us. He has given families more years, more birthdays and more holidays with their loved ones.”
Since 2004, OneLegacy has been the lead sponsor of the Donate Life Rose Parade float to spread the lifesaving message of organ, eye and tissue donation to an international audience. Although the 2021 parade is canceled due to COVID-19, Donate Life and the OneLegacy Foundation will keep the tradition alive with a 25-foot floral sculpture, honoring 21 deceased donors from across the nation.
“Lifesaving transplants would not be possible without generous donors and their families, who, in the midst of tragedy as they lose a loved one, find the courage to say yes to donation,” said Tom Mone, chairman of the Donate Life Rose Parade float committee and CEO of OneLegacy, the nonprofit organ, eye and tissue recovery organization serving the greater Los Angeles area. “We are proud and grateful to honor Xavier, and all these donors, whose acts of kindness have given others a second chance at life.”
The Donate Life floral sculpture, themed “Community of Life,” features a vibrant floral honeycomb built by bees, sharing the important message that we’re stronger when we work together as a community. Individually dedicated roses will adorn this floral installation to honor the gift of life given by donors, donor families, transplant recipients and health care heroes, carrying personal messages of love, remembrance, hope and gratitude.
The Tournament of Roses 2021 TV special will include live-to-tape musical and marching band performances, heartwarming segments related to the Rose Parade, celebrity guest appearances, special Rose Bowl game football highlights, equestrians, spectacular floats from years past, and a behind-the-scenes look into the making of a float. The Rose Parade TV special will air on various broadcast networks Jan. 1, 2021.
The Donate Life Rose Parade Experience is produced by OneLegacy and is made possible thanks to dozens of sponsoring donation, transplant, health care and family care organizations along with individuals who help make donation and transplant possible across the country. Sponsors for 2021 include: American Association of Tissue Banks, Axogen, Community Tissue Services, CryoLife, Dignity Memorial Providers of Las Vegas, Donate Life California, Donor Alliance, Donor Network West, JJ’s Legacy, Legacy Donor Services Foundation, Legacy of Hope, LifeLink Foundation, LifeShare of Oklahoma, Lifesharing, LOPA, Nevada Donor Network, New England Donor Services, New Jersey Sharing Network, OneLegacy and Specialist Direct.