Toledo men’s basketball to promote organ donor awareness Feb. 24

February 22, 2017 | Athletics, Events, News
By Paul Helgren



The University of Toledo and Life Connection of Ohio are partnering to host a Rockets for Life day Friday, Feb. 24, to promote awareness for organ donation in northwest Ohio.

The Rockets will host Central Michigan at Savage Arena in a 6 p.m. tipoff.

UT will honor organ donors, recipients, and those still waiting for a donation. Fans are encouraged to wear green. UT Head Coach Tod Kowalczyk and other UT staff members will wear green in honor of the event. Green-themed promotional items will be given away to fans throughout the game.

“Life Connection of Ohio is grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with University of Toledo Athletics and Coach Kowalczyk for our first Rockets for Life event,” said Kara Steele, director of community services for Life Connection of Ohio. “The goal of Rockets for Life is to raise awareness about the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation. One person has the power to save eight lives through organ donation and enhance 50 more through tissue donation.

“Because of someone’s generous gift of organ donation, my father, a liver recipient, has been alive for the past 19 years. There are countless people touched by organ, eye and tissue donation in our community, and we look forward to honoring those who gave the gift of life and celebrating with those who received a second chance at life through this event,” Steele said.

Kowalczyk said organ donation is a cause that has touched him personally.

“One of my closest friends, Trey Schwab, recently passed away after experiencing complications from a double lung transplant,” Kowalczyk said. “He was able to live 12 years since his initial surgery. A 19-year old young man and his family gave Trey and 14 other people an opportunity to live. I couldn’t be a bigger supporter of organ donation and the work that Life Connection of Ohio is doing. I think it’s vital that we spread the word for people to become organ donors. I certainly am a donor, and my family and all our players are as well.”

Life Connection of Ohio is the nonprofit organization that has promoted and facilitated organ donation in northwest and west central Ohio for 25 years. Last year, Life Connection of Ohio coordinated the recovery of organs from 50 donors, providing 190 life-saving transplants. For more information or to register as an organ, eye and tissue donor, visit lifeconnectionofohio.org.

Tickets for the game are available for the special price of $10, with $2 going to Life Connection of Ohio. Seats are in the upper east A section and must be purchased prior to game day. The promo code for online sales is LIFE.

For tickets, go to utrockets.com and use the promo code LIFE, or call 419.530.GOLD (4653) or stop by the UT Athletic Ticket Office.