Family gives life to others after tragic death - FOX 35 News Orlando

Family gives life to others after tragic death

Posted: Updated:
WEST BLOOMFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

Family photos and precious memories fill the walls of the Stillman household in West Bloomfield. 19-year-old Emily Stillman grew up there with her brother, sister, and loving parents.

Back in February the sophomore at Kalamazoo College called her mom to say she had a bad headache. No one knew it was bacterial meningitis. That night, Emily was admitted to the hospital, where she later died.

Emily had been vaccinated against meningitis, but doctors say the strain she contracted is not covered by vaccines in the U.S. When it was clear she was brain dead and would not recover, her family was faced with a painful decision - whether to donate her organs. At first they said "no."

But a split second change of heart changed countless lives.

This past weekend the Stillmans met 34-year-old Guy Mulligan of Ohio, his wife Amy, and their four and six-year-old sons. Guy, a physician whose heart was failing after surviving childhood cancer, received Emily's heart.

The families spent two days looking at old photos, sharing stories, and getting to know each other.

The Stillmans gave Guy a glass heart that once hung in Emily's room. It says "love" and "blessed."

Emily's lung, liver and kidneys were also donated.  The family has met two other recipients and they're still waiting to hear from two more.

The Stillman's are creating the Emily Stillman Foundation to educate people about bacterial meningitis, the importance of vaccines, and organ donation.

They hope to inspire others to give the gift of life, and change lives, like they did.

Join the Stillman family for the 9th annual "Bringing Organ Donation Awareness to our Faith Communities" seminar on October 30th. The event takes place at Temple Israel (5725 Walnut Lake Road) in West Bloomfield.

The seminar runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Registration is $15 dollars at the door. Continental breakfast starts at 8 a.m. and lunch is included.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Community wants justice as investigation of Armada teen's murder continues

    Community wants justice as investigation of Armada teen's murder continues

    Thursday, July 31 2014 5:40 PM EDT2014-07-31 21:40:23 GMT
    Wearing pink, the mother of 14-year-old April Millsap's boyfriend -- remembered the teen Thursday as the small village of Armada tries to cope."It's very hard, it's in such a spotlight, as a mom you don't think it's going to be like this," said Monique Albertson, mother of April Millsap's boyfriend. "Everyone is just hanging in there the best we can. It's overwhelming."Albertson, joining hundreds of people, police, classmates - most wearing pink which was April Millsap's favorite color."We're...
    Wearing pink, the mother of 14-year-old April Millsap's boyfriend -- remembered the teen Thursday as the small village of Armada tries to cope."It's very hard, it's in such a spotlight, as a mom you don't think it's going to be like this," said Monique Albertson, mother of April Millsap's boyfriend. "Everyone is just hanging in there the best we can. It's overwhelming."Albertson, joining hundreds of people, police, classmates - most wearing pink which was April Millsap's favorite color."We're...
  • Romulus cop in hot water after road rage incident

    Romulus cop in hot water after road rage incident

    Thursday, July 31 2014 4:47 PM EDT2014-07-31 20:47:41 GMT
    An off duty Romulus police officer is facing felony charges in connection with a road rage incident.Officer David Brooks is facing felonious assault and felony firearms charges after an investigation by Van Buren Township detectives.According to the report, police responded to a road rage incident between two trucks on I-94 in Belleville on May 29th.Van buren police pulled one of the trucks over which was driven by Brooks, and found a loaded handgun in the car.Brooks was released on personal ...
    An off duty Romulus police officer is facing felony charges in connection with a road rage incident.Officer David Brooks is facing felonious assault and felony firearms charges after an investigation by Van Buren Township detectives.According to the report, police responded to a road rage incident between two trucks on I-94 in Belleville on May 29th.Van buren police pulled one of the trucks over which was driven by Brooks, and found a loaded handgun in the car.Brooks was released on personal ...
  • SOURCES: Detroit Tigers acquire pitcher David Price

    SOURCES: Detroit Tigers acquire pitcher David Price

    Thursday, July 31 2014 4:46 PM EDT2014-07-31 20:46:10 GMT
    The Tigers have acquired pitcher David Price from the Rays in a three-team trade that reportedly involves the Mariners, according to reports. The clubs have not commented on or confirmed the report.  Jackson goes to Mariners; Smyly, Franklin also involved in three-way deal
    The Tigers have acquired pitcher David Price from the Rays in a three-team trade that reportedly involves the Mariners, according to reports. The clubs have not commented on or confirmed the report.  Jackson goes to Mariners; Smyly, Franklin also involved in three-way deal
  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
Powered by WorldNow

35 Skyline Drive
Lake Mary, FL 32746

Phone: (407) 644-3535
News Tips: (866) 55-FOX35

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices