WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - "He was always smiling." Michelle Rose gave birth to Jamal in 1987. She says he was a happy baby. But when he was just a year old, she says Jamal was attacked by a dog. "Damaged his ear, ripped his ear half off, the tear duct out of his eye, it bit him in the windpipe, broke his growth bone. He lost blood and the left side of this brain was scarred up."
After the accident, Jamal had a mild stroke and started to have seizures. But he kept smiling, refusing to get discouraged. He went to school and played with his friends, like the kids his age. But the days of laughter are now gone. Today was Jamal's funeral. Last week he drowned in a friend's swimming pool.
Michelle says though her heart aches, she knows Jamal is still helping others through his death. Jamal was a registered organ donor.
According to Dahiana De Francisco, with the Life Alliance Organ Recovery Agency in South Florida, of the more than 113-thousand people who are on a waiting list for a transplant, eighteen of them die every day. "So knowing that one organ donor can actually help save up to eight lives with their gift of organ donation and possibly help the lives of 200 people with their gift of tissue donation that's just so meaningful."
The agency says Jamal donated his eyes and tissue.
Jamal's brother, Dionte says he will remembered by many. "Giving, free spirited loving."
For organ donation information: