Organ donation Valentine celebration is Feb. 16

Feb 06, 2013
Photo by: Donated photo Rachel Tucker

Life Share of the Carolinas and a local organ donation recipient are hosting a “Transplant Party” to celebrate the lives saved through organ donation from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, at Main Street Perks, in downtown Waynesville.

Rachel Tucker,  of Waynesville, received her heart transplant 11 years ago.

" I had a condition known as viral cardiomyopathy,” said Tucker.  At the age of 41, I suddenly needed a new heart to survive. I received my new heart Feb. 13, 2002. Yes — new heart for Valentines Day.”

Each year Tucker hosts a party near Valentine’s Day.

“The purpose of the party is threefold,” said Tucker “first of all to celebrate the lives of the organ donors and their families as well as the lives of the organ recipients. Secondly the event will raise awareness for the need of organ donation and encourage people to become donors. The third is to raise funds for Life Shares many needs to continue this important work.”

The Valentine's transplant party will include live music by Battle Victorious, Michael Pilgrim, Kryss Dula,Cyndy Tippett, and JANSML. A representative from Life Share of the Carolinas will be on hand, and a silent art auction will be held.

"It has been 11 years, and I'm still alive and doing well because of this life giving surgery and the generosity of my donor and his or her family for being willing to make that sacrifice,” said Tucker. I would like to thank all  organ donors and celebrate life on this day, as well as give back what I can by hosting this event. I would also like to  thank my family and friends who have supported me and all those who volunteered to help make this event possible, and a special thanks goes to Main Street Perks for their involvement and space and to all the artist who volunteer their time and talents."

For information on the event, email Tucker at