November 13, 2017
On Tuesday, November 21, Riverside Community Hospital will host a special dedication ceremony in honor of 13-year-old Giovanni Valle who passed away on November 12, 2014 at Riverside Community Hospital after being struck by a drunk driver on his way to school. A couple weeks before his death, Giovanni noticed his dad had a pink dot on his license. He asked his dad about it and learned how organ, eye, and tissue donation can help save lives. When his dad explained that he was a donor, Giovanni responded that he wanted to do the same when the time would come for him to get his driver’s license. On November 12, Giovanni passed away and his family made the decision to follow his wishes and donated his tissue. Through Giovannis’ generous gift, he has provided hope and healing to many though donation.
OneLegacy has chosen to sponsor and honor Giovanni in a special way - as a donor whose face will be added to the Donate Life Float at the 2018 Tournament Rose Parade® along with other organ, eye and tissue donors who have given the ultimate gift of life to others.
On Tuesday, November 21, from 3:30pm to 4:30pm, at Riverside Community Hospital’s Health Education Center, Riverside Community Hospital has invited family and friends along with OneLegacy, as they host a special Donate Life rose dedication ceremony in honor of Giovanni. Those also in attendance will include the principal of Sierra Middle School, where he attend, as well as his teachers.
The ceremony will include words from Patrick Brilliant, President/CEO of Riverside Community Hospital, Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey, hospital staff who cared for him while at the hospital, representatives from OneLegacy, and a presentation from the Valle family. During the ceremony, the family will be presented with a floragraph, a portrait of Giovanni created with floral material, and the finishing touches to the eyebrows will be done to then complete the floragraph for the float. Immediately before the event, Mayor Bailey and CEO Patrick Brilliant will have the opportunity to sign and include a special note in honor of Giovani on behalf of the City of Riverside, where Giovanni resided, and on behalf of the hospital and staff who cared for him. These notes will be attached to individually dedicated roses that will be featured on the Donate Life float. The float will be part of the 2018 Rose Parade in Pasadena on January 1, 2018, showcasing the life-saving importance of organ, eye and tissue donation, honoring donors and their families, and recognizing all who make donation and transplantation possible.
Over 23,000 people in California are currently waiting for life-saving organ transplants, and 20 people across the country die each day awaiting life-saving organ transplants. One donor can save up to eight lives through organ donation, and up to 75 lives through tissue donation.
(Photo provided by the Valle family) Interviews with the family will be available at the ceremony. For more information or media interested in attending the ceremony and conducting interviews, please contact Cherie Crutcher for arrangements at 951-236-2772. Float recipient’s bio and photo are provided by the family is attached.
“It is an honor to host this special ceremony in honor of not only Giovanni, but his family as well who made the courageous decision to donate during the most difficult time any parent or family could face. This is the hospital’s second Floragraph Finishing Event, and the purpose of the event is to come together as a hospital and community to honor the life of the individual such as Giovanni and to show our support to the family”, said Cherie Crutcher, Spokeswoman for Riverside Community Hospital. “Our medical team of physicians and nurses, who will be at the event, work in collaboration with OneLegacy to make donation and transplantation possible.” “We would like to thank OneLegacy for being great partners and helping facilitate this great honor”.
This year’s Donate Life float theme, The Gift of Time, highlights the power of organ, eye and tissue donation in providing the gift of time to those who are waiting for a life-saving transplant. It also fits into the spirit of the parade theme, “Making a Difference,” celebrating the power of kindness and the people in our communities that are selflessly making a positive difference in our lives. The 2018 Donate Life Float’s vibrantly colored tropical jungle will tour the streets of Pasadena during the 129th Rose Parade® on January 1, 2018.