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Young organ donor and family honored at Fiesta Bowl Parade

Posted: 8:14 AM, Jan 02, 2017
Updated: 2017-01-02 15:14:27Z

A young organ donor and his family were honored for their sacrifice on Saturday at the Fiesta Bowl Parade.

After enduring a heartbreaking loss, they wanted to make sure no other families felt the same pain they did.

"His hugs. He gave the best hugs. He had a way of lighting up a room," Stacy Lord said about her 3-year-old son, Devohn.

He was a Mama's boy. She was his biggest fan. Together, they were inseparable.

But right before Christmas 2007, their lives changed forever.

Devohn was running around the house like most little boys do, only this time, something happened.

"He tripped and fell head-first into the table."

Devohn got up, seemed OK and then went to bed to lie down -- but he would never wake up.

"When they did the brain scan, there were no brain waves. He was breathing on his own, but there was no brain function. I just remember falling to the ground and I think at that moment, I realized my son was gone."

As her little boy left this earth, all Stacy could think about was making sure no one else felt their heart shatter into a million pieces just like hers had.

"I thought, 'If you can't save my son, then save someone else.'"

But little did she know, 600 miles away, Devohn was already working his magic.

Shauntelle Stephenson's daughter, Kaidance, was in heart failure. In Stacy's loss was a miracle for the Stephenson family: Baby Kaidance needed a new heart and Devohn was their last hope.

"Kaidance knows she's had that heart of angel that beats in her chest," explains Shauntelle.

The families have met up since then, cementing their lifelong bond. For Stacy, the pain never goes away, but knowing her little boy went on to save three lives makes accepting it a little easier.

"The grieving never ends, but it has helped my heart smile a little more."

Kaidance did go on to receive another heart, but her family is confident that Devohn's heart gave her many more years of life.

For more information on how you can take action and be an organ donor, head to DonateLifeAZ.org.

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