Honolulu - April 6, 2015 - As part of National Donate Life Month, the Senate honored the families of Kekoa Nelson from Maui, Duke DeRego of the Big Island and former Honolulu police officer Jens Magelssen for their loved ones lifesaving gift.Many of the families held pictures of their loved ones. Duke DeRego died at the age of 14. His family says his donated organs helped three different people.
"Duke was always giving. He was a giving young man. This is the ultimate gift and just to know it means something -- not only to us, to our Senate, to Hawaii, is just an honor," said Shirley DeRego, Duke's mother. "I am at a loss for words. I'm proud of this today."
In Hawaii there are 450 people who are currently waiting for an organ donation. The Department of Health says the demand is growing twice as fast as the supply.