Jacob Krebs – Organ Donation by Will, Mary and Julie Krebs
Registering as an organ donor was a “no brainer” for Jacob. His life was dedicated to “helping other people at all times”. He was an Eagle Scout and earned six Palms. At age 16, the day Jacob got his driver’s license he asked if he could register to be an organ donor. I emphatically agreed to it, not really thinking the impact it would have on our family if it actually happened.
April 1, 2013, two years later, Jacob was declared brain dead following a shallow water drowning accident. Jacob had been training for a Navy S.E.A.L. contract when he lost consciousness while holding his breath for a few minutes. He never woke up.
Jacob was air-lifted to San Antonio and lay unconscious for six days following the accident. Upon arrival at the hospital, he was immediately put on a respirator and other machines to keep him alive and attempt to heal him. We prayed continually day and night, every day, God would heal Jacob’s lungs and let him live. On Easter Sunday, God answered our prayers, just not the way we wanted. God performed many miracles that day. He healed Jacob’s lungs and other organs so they could be successfully harvested and transplanted into at least five different people and as many as eighty others with his skin and tissue donations.
As parents, not in our lifetime, did it ever occur to us we would be making the decision to carry out Jacob’s wishes. Parents are supposed to outlive their children. But knowing Jacob’s request and who he was, it was the right thing to do. There was never a hesitation. God was in the hospital room with us. Our only request of the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance (TOSA) and Allograft Resources was to have his organs and tissues donated to military veterans. We knew that’s what Jacob would have wanted.
On April 2, 2013 Jacob and his transplant recipients celebrated a new re-birth. Jacob lives on in the lives of others. He gave the ultimate gift of life. We are blessed to have met David, his double-lung recipient, and the meeting was bitter sweet. We were so blessed the family welcomed us into their home. David let me hug him as soon as I saw him. I could feel his chest rise and fall, followed by my tears of sorrow and tears of joy. Jacob continues to breathe through David. We are very grateful to be witnesses of God’s faith and unending love.
It has been difficult since Jacob died, but God has been faithful to us. We are at peace knowing Jacob is standing tall as a soldier of God and is in “God’s Army” now. We continue to persevere and honor Jacob by becoming organ donors ourselves and spreading the word about organ and tissue donation.