media center

Organ Donor
Age 21 ~ Orange, CA
Donated by 5/15/09
at UC Irvine Medical Center, Orange, CA

Honored by OneLegacy

Born in Mexico and raised in the United States, Sandra M. Velazquez was a happy and joyful young woman. She was full of vitality and very loving with her family, especially with her two little sisters. Sandra was very proud that her name meant "protector of humans." When she passed away after a car accident, she became the protector of four recipients, among them a 15-year-old who is now free of dialysis treatments.

Sandra's Story

Sandra Velazquez was born in Mexico on March 12, 1988 and moved to the United States when she was seven. She was very close to her family and friends, both in the U.S. and in her native country.

From the beginning, Sandra thrived both academically and socially and was loved by her peers. "She loved to exercise, especially dance," said her mother Blanca. "She took lots of pictures with everyone, where she was always smiling."

On one occasion, Sandra asked about the meaning of her name, and her mother explained that it meant "protector of humans." Sandra lit up because helping others was one of her passions. She was a warrior when it came to protecting her loved ones, especially her two younger sisters.

Sandra's passion for helping people is what led her to register as an organ donor at the DMV. Sandra shared the news with her mother and insisted that that was her will, and that if something happened to her, she wanted her wishes honored. A few years later, on May 15, 2009, 21-year-old Sandra was involved in a fatal car accident, and her wish to donate came true.

Sandra's absence has been hard for her parents and two younger sisters, but her legacy brings them pride, says her mother. "She did not leave us – she multiplied through the gifts of her liver, pancreas and kidneys. The recipients are now part of me and my family. I think of them every day, especially the youngest one, who was 15 and on dialysis at the time. I hope I can hug them some day."