SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Ketchikan Man Gives Heroic Last Gift


February 23, 2007
Friday AM

Ketchikan, AK - There are 95,000 people waiting for organ transplants nationally. In January, a 41-year-old man in Ketchikan helped four of those people through his final and generous wish to be an organ donor.

David McLean, an Alaska native, donated both of his kidneys, his liver and heart as an organ donor. With these transplants, he was able to give new life to four people waiting for the gift of life. "We are so proud of David for saving these people's lives," says his mother, Nancy Ross of Ketchikan.

Ketchikan General Hospital, along with the family of David McLean who requested that his organs be used to bring life to others, were recently part of an amazing transplant story. Alaska's designated Organ Procurement Organization, LifeCenter Northwest, worked with a KGH medical team and McLean's family to recover the organs and transfer them by air to the waiting recipients. Ketchikan airport personnel stood by in order to keep the runways open during a snowstorm, while medical teams in distant states prepared patients to receive organ transplants and a second chance at life.

"We can only hope that David's final act of generosity will encourage others to do the same," said Lorrie Mortensen, Vice President for Patient Care from Ketchikan General Hospital.

Ketchikan General Hospital is an accredited acute and long-term care facility providing a variety of services including comprehensive trauma, inpatient (25 beds), outpatient, and home health services and a long-term care facility (29 beds).

LifeCenter Northwest Organ Donation Network is a nonprofit organization that facilitates organ donation for a population of over 7.5 million people throughout Washington, Montana, Alaska and Northern Idaho.

Currently, just 45% of people in Alaska are registered organ donors. There are three ways to register your wish to become an organ donor in Alaska:

  • Register online at
  • Call toll-free at 1-800-719-5443 and request a brochure to fill out and return.
  • Say 'yes' to organ donation when renewing your driver's license. Residents who already have a heart on their driver's license are automatically added to the Alaska Donor Registry.


Source of News:

Ketchikan General Hospital


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Ketchikan, Alaska