'Good is going to come out of this tragedy': Dodge County teen proves the power of organ donation
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- We often hear the success stories of people whose lives were saved because of organ donation.
This story is about Cade Werner, a 14-year-old boy from Dodge County who did the saving.
In 2017, Cade Werner and his brother, Cody Werner, were in a car accident that left Cade Werner with a severe brain injury. After days of hoping for a different outcome, doctors approached his parents about organ donation.
"When you have to make that decision for your child, it really makes you aware of how important it really is," his mother Gloria Werner told CBS 58. "After you kind of catch your breath after being asked that question, it's like of course. Something good is going to come out of this tragedy."
Something good did happen. Cade Werner's organs saved four lives. Two men got his kidney and pancreas. His liver went to a teenage girl.
"He would think it's cool. Honestly, Cade would be like I saved somebody's life," Gloria Werner said.
The fourth recipient is Greyson.
Cade's heart now beats in the chest of the little boy from Green Bay.
"Anybody would have been great, but you know, having it (be) a little boy growing up, (Cade) would think that's absolutely awesome," Gloria Werner said.
More than 106,000 people in the United States are waiting for an organ, including more than 1,500 people in Wisconsin, according to Versiti.
"Every nine minutes, another name is added to the national transplant waiting list, and every day 17 people die (while waiting)," Vice President of Organ and Tissue Donation at Versiti Colleen McCarthy said. "Donation is such a precious and rare gift, and we ask everyone in April to consider signing up to be an organ donor."
April is "Donate Life" month.
Versiti raised a flag at 1:08 p.m. on Friday, April 1 in Milwaukee to represent that every one person who signs up for organ donation can save up to eight lives.
"That's the kind of kid that Cade was," Gloria Werner said. "Cade loved helping people."
Gloria Werner told CBS 58 her family keeps in close touch with Greyson's family.
"Yeah, we don't have Cade, but like, part of him is in Greyson, and we get to watch him grow, and we weren't going to get Cade back. So, if we could have some positive in this, it's worth it," Gloria Werner said.
Cade Werner's story proves that something positive can be found even in the most tragic of stories.
"I feel like it's definitely a healing process knowing that Cade is keeping (Greyson) alive. It's pretty awesome," Gloria Werner said.
People 15-and-a-half years or older can register to become an organ donor.