While all of the floats in the Rose Parade are remarkable for their beauty and attention to detail, my children and I have a special spot in our heart for this year’s entry from Donate Life and its Los Angeles affiliate, One Legacy. In fact, we personally glued a couple hundred split peas to its left rear clock face. The float, named One More Day, honors the millions of people who are touched by organ, eye and tissue donation, including living donors, donor families, transplant recipients and transplant candidates.
The float includes a dedication garden with thousands of yellow and pink rose vials, one of which bears the name of Daniel Ramirez, Gabe and Sylvie’s dad and a 2008 donor. His generosity in the face of terminal colon cancer is echoed thousands of times in the float’s dedication garden and again in the “floragraph” portraits of deceased individuals whose contributions made and continue to make an immeasurable difference in the lives of their donor recipients.
One Legacy and Donate Life hope that the float will inspire parade viewers to consider checking that little pink DMV circle and join the 100 million Americans who are registered as donors. In fact, L.A.’s One Legacy is the largest organ and tissue recovery organization in the world, supporting 200 hospitals and 12 transplant centers, as well as providing donor families with emotional support and grief counseling.
In any case, watch for the float and its 33-foot-tall clock tower. It’s a beauty, and Dan would be proud of those split peas near the back … though we know very well he would have been skipping around the scaffolding, given a chance!
Pasadena resident Patty O’Sullivan is the associate publisher at Prospect Park Media.