Giving Life a Second Chance
Through Organ & Tissue Donation

"Threads of Love" Donor Memorial Quilt: Quilt 63

John Nolan

Our Uncle was a unique person. In his early teens, he appointed himself the neighborhood crossing guard for life. Day after day, in rain, snow, oppressive heat and bitter cold, he proudly showed up to his post. He diligently watched over his kids until they were all safely off to school. He would also be there when they returned, making sure every child made it home safely. Personally delivering some right to their family’s door. He did this for over 50 years.

In between his bus duties he would walk, keeping watch over the neighborhood. He made his usual stops to visit with neighbors, sitting on their porch with them having a conversation and a coke. Always a coke. They would share the news from their lives. Births, deaths, broken cars, new jobs, etc. They did this because Jackie was not just part of our family, he was part of every family in the neighborhood. They loved him almost as much as we did.

The amazing thing is that our Uncle did all of this despite being born with Cerebral Palsy. His handicap left him with one good leg, one good arm, and limited verbalization of the many stories and ideas contained inside of him. And yet, as a child, he persevered. Teaching himself to walk and communicate, he lived a very full and happy life.

Watching over his school children, watching over his neighborhood and last but not least, watching over his family. Always watching. Thanks to those big blue caring eyes, nothing happened in our neighborhood without Jackie knowing about it.

We know how proud he’d be today knowing his gift will help someone watch over their world as he did. And it warms our hearts knowing a part of him is still watching too.

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