Illinois Secretary of State urges residents to become donors

By WEEK Producer

Illinois Secretary of State urges residents to become donors

May 15, 2012 Updated May 16, 2012 at 11:48 AM CDT

PEKIN, Ill. -- Three hundred people will die this year in Illinois while waiting for an organ transplant, but you can do your part to change that.

On Tuesday, Secretary of State Jesse White held a "tree unveiling ceremony" at Pekin hospital to honor the facility's commitment to organ and tissue donation.

Five thousand people are on a waiting list for an organ transplant, and Vikki Tulcus is on that list.

For 10 years, she has educated others about the importance of being a donor through the state's organ tissue donor program. Now because of a rare disease Tulcus finds herself in search of a new kidney.

"Right now, there's no match," Vicki said. "Only 3 percent of the U.S. population will be a match because of all the blood transfusions I've had would make me reject an organ from someone."

The secretary of state says one person can improve the quality of life for 25 others.

You can register to become an organ donor at any state driver's license facility, or by calling 1-800-210-2106.

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