I know many of you have already have heard the sad news…Steve Reynolds passed away this week. There will be a celebration of his life next Friday at 2:00pm at the Urban Horticulture Center (see attached)
Steve was one of our liver recipients. He and his wife, Jeannie, came on board as Team Transplanters in 2004 and quickly became two of our most committed team members. They totally embraced the Team Transplant lifestyle…becoming regulars at weekly practices; choosing to walk to and from work; and competing in half marathons. They understood the benefits of being active, but more importantly, they understood…and helped me understand…the importance of being surrounded by a team that can support and encourage you… Their welcoming spirit; genuine interest in friendship; and ability to reach out inspired many others to join the team as well.
And while Steve took his commitment to the team quite seriously, it was also very clear that he had a lot of fun with it. He was the one who coined the phrase “Don’t be a Hill-o-Weenie,” the official mantra for our hilly season, the beginning of which corresponds with the month of October. And when he and Jeannie traveled to Italy several years ago, he took along GiGi (a Green Guy..or as he pointed out…maybe it was a Green Gal? How did we really know?) To make GiGi, he and Jeannie took a green organ donation awareness pin, attached it to a notecard, and with a green marker, drew arms and a head to make it look like one of the original green guys. Then, in pure Amelie fashion, he took pictures of GiGi at Cinque de Terra, Florence, Tuscany, Sienna, Venice, and the statue of David, and sent them to me. The message was clear…I needed to get out more! And…Steve made sure I did…by introducing me (his dietitian) to such culinary hotspots as Spud’s Fish’n Chips, Red Mill Burgers, and Voola’s Diner!
I know that we will all miss Steve dearly…His presence on the team touched each and everyone of us. I feel so fortunate to be able to say that he was a part of our family, but I feel even more blessed that he and Jeannie let us be a part of their’s.