OneLegacy, the local organ procurement organization that serves seven counties in Southern California, joined The California Highway Patrol and San Bernardino College’s Nursing School to host a special event to promote the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation with local students and community members.
The event took place last Thursday, February 23 at San Bernardino Valley College. NASCAR driver Joey Gase’s racecar was decorated with pink donor dots, representing a symbol of hope and support to more than 100,000 people who are currently waiting for a lifesaving organ or tissue transplant. Dozens of students from San Bernardino Valley College, as well as donor families, living donors and organ, eye and tissue recipients were in attendance to stamp their donor dots and also sign the car with inspiring messages about donation.
Joey Gase’s decorated racecar participated on Sunday, February 26 – in the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. He was joined in the pits by the family of Marine Veteran, Lance “Bo” Chavez, whose image was placed on Joey Gase’s racecar to honor his memory and legacy as an organ and tissue donor. Lance’s family cheered for Joey during the race, and they continue honoring his memory through his foundation, L;ve Aloha, to raise awareness of Veteran Suicide and support Veteran families in their grief journey.
Joey and his family are no strangers to organ, eye and tissue donation. Following his mother’s death of a sudden brain aneurysm in 2011, NASCAR driver Joey Gase and his family made the courageous decision to donate her organs, eyes and tissues, saving and transforming forever the lives of 66 people who were waiting for a lifesaving transplant. Since then, Gase has become as passionate about donation as he is about racing. In 2015, he was awarded NASCAR’s inaugural COMCAST Community Outreach Award for his work supporting organ, eye and tissue donation and donor families. Joey Gase finished in the 29th position at the Xfinity Production Alliance Group 300 race in Fontana.
“Once again, OneLegacy is excited to have this amazing opportunity to bring the power of organ, eye and tissue donation front and center during this year’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Auto Club Speedway,” said Tom Mone, Chief External Affairs Officer of OneLegacy, the largest organ procurement organization in the country, serving 7 counties and over 20 million people in Southern California. “We want to thank Joey Gase, his family and team, for his continuous advocacy and dedication to promote the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation across the U.S.”
“I’m very thankful to be able to team up with OneLegacy to not only promote organ, eye, and tissue donation but to also honor all of those affected by it,” said Gase. “I have learned firsthand how import donation is not only to those on the wait list and recipients, but to donor families as well.”
Joey Gase is traveling to Nevada later this week to participate in the next NASCAR Xfinity Race, which will take place March 4 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.