Our lives can change within moments and when they do, there is no telling what will happen next. Cletus was out to dinner with his family and began to choke on a piece of steak. Unfortunately, his wife was in another room taking care of their three children and she was unable to save him. By the time they called 911, it was simply too late.
Cletus passed away a mere two days later. His wife Carrie was now a widow. She also had some quick and painful decisions to make. What were they going to do with Cletus’ organs? Cletus had let his wife know that he was prepared to donate his organs if he passed away and this is one wish that she was happy to carry out. She knew that he would want to help others.
Mercy West Hospital staffers decided to put together a touching ceremony that would allow Cletus’ friends and loved ones to say goodbye. As they wheeled his body down the hallway and into the operational room, dozens of people paid their respects to Cletus. They thanked him for his selfless nature and let him know that his donation was appreciated.
While it was hard for Carrie to let go, this “Honor Walk” touched her deeply. Seeing the number of lives that her husband was affecting was incredible and it was also heartbreaking. The wave of emotions that she felt at this time was tough to wrap her mind around. Losing your husband under tragic circumstances is something that no one should ever have to go through.
When she took photos from the “Honor Walk” and put them up on her Facebook page, they went viral immediately. She also received messages from the people who were utilizing her husband’s organs. These stories gave her the strength to keep going when she was struggling to make it through the days. Seeing people receive a new lease on life because of her husband softens the blow of his loss.
Carrie has even taken the time to meet some of the people who were positively affected by her husband’s generosity. Meeting the families of those who have been given a second chance because of Cletus’ donation is providing her with the will to go on. A GoFundMe page has been established to assist the family with their financial burden so be sure to visit Clete Schieders’ memorial fund if you would like to help out.
Today @LifeCenterCincy and these gracious families let us in on a life changing moment. Schneider’s family met John Mock who’s the recipient of his liver! #Donation #Cincinnati #Ohio pic.twitter.com/x8OddhaSFj
— Alexis Rogers (@AlexisWLWT) July 18, 2018