On January 1, 2011, 15 roses were placed on the Donate Life Seize the Day! Rose Parade float by Saving Sight to celebrate the lives of eye and tissue donors from its service area and to recognize cornea recipients who have been blessed with the gift of sight. Photos of Seize the Day!, winner of the 2011 Tournament of Roses Theme Trophy, can be viewed on the Donate Life Float Facebook page.

Those individuals honored by the Eye Bank included:


  • Thomas Coons, Washington, Mo.
  • Duane Copeland, Springfield, Mo.
  • Thomas Klinginsmith, Carthage, Mo.
  • Nolan Long, Chillicothe, Mo.
  • Cindy Meads, Kansas City, Mo.
  • Cody Dunham, Divernon, Ill.
  • Kathy Green, Hutchinson, Kan. (living kidney donor and Eye Bank volunteer)


  • Dorothy DuNard, Columbia, Mo.
  • Jana Huebner, St. Charles, Mo.
  • Helen List, Branson, Mo.
  • Chris Meyer, Kansas City, Mo.
  • Louis Rhodes, Eureka Springs, Ark.
  • Roena Henne, Decatur, Ill.
  • Wilma Shewhart, Decatur, Ill.
  • Georgia Henry, Sterling, Kan. (kidney recipient and Eye Bank volunteer)

As one of the five largest eye banks in the nation, the Eye Bank retrieved and processed corneas for 2,775 transplants in 2009. Thanks to caring eye donors, talented surgeons and the Eye Bank, eyesight is restored to individuals who have lost their vision due to an ocular disease, disorder or injury.

The Donate Life Seize the Day! float brought to life the 2011 Rose Parade theme, Building Dreams, Friendships & Memories, with colorful kites soaring in the wind as donor families, living donors and transplant recipients made new memories through a precious moment. The tails of the kites were adorned with 60 memorial “floragraph” portraits of deceased donors whose legacies lifted the kites and hopes of those in need of transplants. The float’s 24 float riders, led by three walkers, honored all donors and the everyday dreams they make possible through the gift of life. Thousands of eye, organ and tissue donors nationwide were memorialized with roses dedicated by loved ones; each rose bore a vial with a personal message of love, hope and remembrance.

Donate Life is a not-for-profit alliance of local affiliates and national organizations dedicated to inspiring all people to donate life through organ, eye and tissue donation. Hundreds of thousands of people from all walks of life in every corner of the country are in need of life-saving and healing gifts that are possible only through organ, eye, tissue and blood donation. The float’s national campaign is coordinated by OneLegacy, the non-profit, federally designated organ and tissue recovery agency serving the seven-county greater Los Angeles area, and is supported by approximately 60 organizations nationwide.