Lacrosse Players Team Up with LiveOnNY
Often times, heroes are portrayed as masked figures wearing capes and fighting crime, but this week, heroism came in a different form as members of the Cardinals’ men's lacrosse team, led by their head coach Dave Dobbins, joined forces with LiveOnNY in an effort to register organ donors as part of National Organ Donation Enrollment Day.
Dobbins, who enters his second year at the helm of the team, has been actively involved with organ donation since losing his daughter Colleen at just five months old.
“It was obviously a really difficult time for my family, but the decision to donate Colleen’s organs was an easy one,” said Dobbins, who is actively involved in numerous charities and organizes Fisher’s annual Donate for Life game each spring.
Dobbins, along with his wife Erin, made the choice to donate Colleen’s organs – a decision that forever changed the lives of several families whom the Dobbins had never met. Through Colleen’s donation, an infant in Canada was able to receive a life-saving heart transplant while another received her liver, pancreas and small intestine – gifts that also saved her life in the process.
Perhaps just as important as the registration piece is the awareness Dobbins and his team helped to spread about the importance of organ donation.
“We talk about being a family all the time and we all try to support each other,” said Dobbins, who guided Fisher to the Empire 8 Championship game last season for the first time since 2014. “It means a ton to me that our guys are supporting the cause and I think it’s great for the Fisher community.”
Dobbins didn’t have to look far for help. His team developed a tradition of supporting various charitable endeavors. Last season, the Cardinals raised over $4,000 for the Golisano Children’s Hospital as part of the Go for the Goal campaign to stamp out pediatric cancer and have volunteered their time to serve meals at the Ronald McDonald House.
“[The lacrosse team] is here to support a cause that’s really close to coach’s heart that he talks about a lot and really feels strongly about,” added senior captain Danny Turck. “[Organ donation] really doesn’t take anything from you, but it can make a huge difference in someone else’s life and coach is really passionate about it and that’s made us passionate.”
The team, which manned a table in the campus center for nearly 12 hours, signed up over 200 new organ donors, something Dobbins was quick to point out.
“They’ve done an unbelievable job promoting this cause and supporting it and I couldn’t be more proud of their efforts,” he said. “I want to thank everyone who registered or took part in making this event a huge success. You may have saved someone’s life.”
Organ donation is a critical service that saves thousands of lives every year. With one New Yorker dying every 18 hours as a result of awaiting a transplant, donations are needed now more than ever. One organ donor has the potential to save up to eight lives.
To learn more about organ donation or to get involved, please visit Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network.