Donate Life Champion Inaugural Award
Keith joins Michael Jordan, Professional Golfer Erik Compton, The Arizona Diamondbacks, and Retired NFL Quarterback Boomer Esiason among others in receiving this prestigious award.
LAS VEGAS – April 13, 2013 – Simon Keith, the first athlete in the world to play a professional sport after receiving a heart transplant, has been awarded the Donate Life Champion award, based on his remarkable longevity, athletic accomplishments and his passionate promotion of organ donation. As part of the “20 Million in 2012” campaign to register 20 million new people to state organ, eye and tissue donor registries last year, Donate Life America worked with state affiliates to present more than 50 Donate Life Champion awards to well-known athletes, teams and other role models within the sports community who have demonstrated remarkable support for organ, eye and tissue donation. In its inaugural year, the Donate Life Champion awards are being given to select members of the athletic community from across the country that have inspired others to give the gifts of life, sight and mobility. Keith joins a list of individuals and organizations committed to this cause, including Michael Jordan, pro golfer Erik Compton, Boomer Esiason, San Francisco Giants coach Mark Gardner, as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks. One of the longest living transplant recipients in the world, Simon released his autobiography – Heart for the Game – and also established The Simon Keith Foundation in 2012. Additional information about his inspirational story can be found at www.thesimonkeithfoundation.com. After serving on the Nevada Donor Network’s Board of Governors, Simon is now the Chief Operating Officer for the Network. The Nevada Donor Network is the Organ Procurement Organization for most of the state of Nevada. More than 115,000 Americans are currently waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant. By working with sports figures and their loyal fans, Donate Life America hopes to radically increase the number of registered donors. Fans of sports figures are encouraged to join their state donor registry in their honor, to be known as a FanForLife. Each FanForLife has the potential to save up to 8 lives through organ donation and improve the quality of life for up to 50 people through eye and tissue donation. To join your state registry visit www.donatelifeamerica.org. The Simon Keith Foundation is dedicated to providing financial support primarily to youths who have undergone a life-saving organ transplant who desire a return to an active and healthy lifestyle. In addition to helping people with their non-medical expenses, the Foundation strives to increase organ donor registration through public awareness campaigns. For additional information please go to www.thesimonkeithfoundation.com. Heart for the Game is available on Amazon, I-Tunes and through the Simon Keith Foundation website at www.thesimonkeithfoundation.com. Quotes from Heart for the Game “I have spent my professional career playing against some of the greatest athletes in the world. Each train hard, have a burning desire for their sport and have inevitably overcome some kind of adversity. I have never met an athlete who overcame Simon’s circumstances. To say the odds of playing soccer again were overwhelming doesn’t even begin to explain what he did.” -Steve Nash, two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Contacts: Kate McCullough, Nevada Donor Network (firstname.lastname@example.org) (702) 796-9600 or (702) 884-1229 (cellular) Michael Mack, Las Vegas Events (email@example.com) (702) 260-8605 or (702) 349-0023 (cellular)
Simon Keith is not only one of the longest-living heart transplant recipients, he is also the first to have ever played professional sports after a transplant. This is his remarkable story. It is the story of one of the most talented young soccer players in North America, on his way to playing for his country in the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. Unfortunately, Simon never made that trip. He was diagnosed with a fatal heart disease and given only a few weeks to live. Then something extraordinary happened. Perilously close to death, Simon received the gift of a heart donation. Simon was given a second chance, from the most ironic of donors. Following his heart transplant, not only did Simon return to play professional soccer becoming one of the best players in North America for the second time, he went on to live the life he always dreamed of having.Get the Book