Fort Worth

Family of Joshua football player meets organ donor recipients

Cassondra Singleton didn’t think twice about donating her son’s organs when he died Nov. 4 last year, after suffering a seizure from head trauma in a junior varsity football game the night before.

“I knew it was something he wanted, something that needed to be done,” Singleton said. “He was always there for everybody and loved helping people.”

Wednesday, in a celebration of hope and purpose, Aaron’s family met the recipients of his organs at Baylor All Saints Medical Center in Fort Worth.

“It’s amazing to be here today, knowing Aaron lives on,” Singleton said. “It’s very emotional but all positive, everything has just been so positive.”

With the football team standing nearby, the family raised a flag in honor of National Donate Life month in front of the hospital and the school choir sang.

Aaron, 15, was a sophomore at Joshua High School who participated in football, baseball, track and field, band, choir and Boy Scouts.

Mike Norton, who received Aaron’s heart, said he doesn’t know how Aaron had enough time in the day to do it all.

“It makes me feel like I need to get up and do something when I’m not doing anything,” said Norton, 62. “I try to keep up with him.”

Norton was put on the transplant list Sept. 15 last year and told he might be hospitalized until Christmas. He received his transplant Nov. 5 in Houston.

Brenda Flores, recipient of a kidney and his liver, said that before the transplant she felt desperate and hopeless, but tried to stay positive. Ten days after she was put on the list, she got the call saying a donation was available.

“It’s mind-blowing, just amazing to see what a well-rounded person Aaron was,” said Flores, 61. “His legacy and his memory live on in other people.”

Another recipient who could not be there received Aaron’s other kidney and his pancreas.

And two people had their sight restored, Aaron’s mother said.

“Now, because of Aaron, they can see,” she said. “These recipients can do things they haven’t done in a long time, things so many people take for granted.”

Azia Branson: 817-390-7547, @aziabranson