Giving hope life & healing

Writing to Recipients

Writing to Your Loved One’s Recipients

Many donor families find comfort in writing letters to the recipients who received their loved one’s gifts. If you are interested in writing, please use the suggestions and guidelines below. You may choose to write a handwritten note on paper or a card or type your letter.

 Starting your letter:

  • Specify the type of donation in your greeting (Dear Heart Recipient, Dear Cornea Recipient)
  • Do not use your name – use only your connection to the donor (John’s Wife, Jennifer’s Sister)

Introduce Yourself:

  • Your occupation
  • Your family (spouse, children, grandchildren)
  • Your interests and/or hobbies
  • The state in which you live

 Talk about your loved one:

  • Their occupation
  • Their family (if not already written above)
  • Their interests and/or hobbies
  • What kind of person they were
  • Special memories you shared with them
**Since the religion and culture of the recipient is unknown, please consider this as you write your letter. 

Share how the decision to donate impacted you:

  • Has it helped you heal?
  • Has it given you peace knowing that their legacy lives on

  Closing your letter:

  • Sign your first name only
  • Do not reveal your last name, address, city, phone number, e-mail address, or name of the hospital.

Sending your letter:

  • Place your letter in an unsealed envelope
  • On a separate sheet of paper, write the following:
    • Your name
    • Your loved one’s name
    • Date of your loved one’s donation
  • Mail to:
    • LifeShare Carolinas
      8000-D Airport Center Parkway
      Charlotte, NC 28208
  • LifeShare will mail your letter to the recipient’s transplant center, who will forward the letter to the recipient. All confidentiality will be maintained.

After You Send Your Letter:

You may or may not hear from your loved one’s recipients. Many transplant recipients feel very close to their donor and are honored to write letters of thanks to their donor’s family. However, some transplant recipients do not write to their donor’s family. Even though they are extremely grateful for the gift of life, they may struggle with expressing their feelings. Just as some donor families prefer to remain private, so do some transplant recipients. It may take several months, or even years, for a recipient to feels comfortable writing to their donor’s family.

Remember that what you say isn’t as important as who the letter is from.





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800.932.GIVE (4483)

Charlotte Office
5000 D Airport Center Parkway
Charlotte, NC 28208
fax: 704.512.3056

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1200 Ridgefield Boulevard
Suite 150
Asheville, NC 28806
fax: 828.665.4729