Donate Life Specialty Plate Inspires Wyomingites to Save & Heal Lives
Young Heart Recipient & Donor Alliance Hope to Raise Awareness, Support Mission Around Organ, Eye & Tissue Donation
DENVER – January 24, 2024 – A Uinta County father and son’s diligence to raise awareness around organ, eye, and tissue donation can now be seen on vehicles across Wyoming. Bryson Quinney, a young heart recipient, and his father Eric Quinney championed a Donate Life specialty license plate in Wyoming with the help of state lawmakers to spark conversations across the state about the power of donation. This month, Donor Alliance was proud to announce the new specialty plate in Wyoming has launched. Donor Alliance’s mission is to save and heal lives through organ and tissue donation and transplantation in most of Wyoming and Colorado. The new license plate will serve as a “rolling” billboard to inspire more Wyomingites to say Yes to registering as an organ, eye, and tissue donor.
“Each Wyomingite who installs the Donate Life Wyoming license plate on their vehicle is literally saving and healing lives,” said Jennifer Prinz, President and CEO of Donor Alliance. “There are nearly 1,300 people in our community currently waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant. Donor Alliance is so appreciative of Bryson and his father Eric for rolling up their sleeves and working alongside Wyoming state lawmakers to make this license plate a reality to help us raise awareness and connect Wyomingites to our mission.”
Bryson was born with several congenital heart defects and underwent three open heart surgeries by the time he turned three-years-old. In 2019, Bryson’s heart defects damaged his liver, and he was added to the transplant waiting list. While Bryson waited in the hospital to receive a new heart, he met another patient waiting for a heart transplant who was the same age. They quickly became friends and shared a special bond. When he was 13 years old, Bryson got the call he and his family waited anxiously for and was able to go home a few weeks after his heart transplant; however, his friend continued to wait in the hospital. She never received the call and passed away.
“From that moment, Bryson was determined to do more to raise awareness about the lifesaving and healing gifts of organ and tissue donation,” said Eric Quinney, Bryson’s father. “We were excited to work with Senator Wendy Schuler to develop legislation to authorize the production of a Donate Life license plate here in Wyoming. Our son is alive today because of someone’s selfless sacrifice. We hope others will register to become organ, eye, and tissue donors to save and heal many more lives.”
Bryson’s journey as a heart transplant recipient played a pivotal role in changing legislation. The bill was introduced during the 2022 Wyoming Legislative Session. Bryson gave powerful testimony to the Transportation Committee, and the bill was passed in 2023.
“It has been my utmost honor to work with Bryson and Eric Quinney in the passage of Wyoming’s Donate Life License Plate legislation,” said Wyoming State Senator Wendy Schuler. “With their good work and ‘never give up’ attitude, this project was able to move forward. My hope is with this increased awareness, we can hopefully save many lives for those who are desperately waiting for transplants.”
One person can save up to eight lives through organ donation and save and heal up to 75 lives through tissue donation. Wyomingites can register to be an organ, eye, and tissue donor by saying Yes when they obtain or renew a driver license/state ID at Driver Services or register anytime at DonateLifeWyoming.org. For those interested in supporting the mission of inspiring and educating Wyomingites about the power of donation, you can order a Donate Life specialty plate on WYDOT’s website.
About Donor Alliance
Donor Alliance is a non-profit organization dedicated to saving and healing lives through organ and tissue donation for transplantation in Colorado and most of Wyoming. As a federally designated organ procurement organization – one of 56 in the U.S. – Donor Alliance serves more than 6.3 million residents and more than 100 hospitals. Donor Alliance walks alongside the family during the organ recovery process and ensures their loved one’s gifts are safely received at transplant centers in a timely manner. Donor Alliance also facilitates tissue donation to save and heal more lives across our community.
In addition, the organization maintains partnerships with hospitals and manages the donor registries in the region, Donate Life Colorado and Donate Life Wyoming, which are symbols of the cause. Through Donate Life, Donor Alliance educates residents on the lifesaving benefits of donation, inspiring them to register. For more information, please visit DonorAlliance.org.