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12-year-old Las Vegas organ donor who helped hundreds honored at Rose Parade

By LAUREN MARTINEZ

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    LAS VEGAS (KVVU) — A young boy from Las Vegas, killed by a distracted driver in 2020, was honored on New Year’s Day for helping hundreds of people through organ donations.

Alex Bush was one of 35 organ donor heroes featured on the 2022 Donate Life Rose Parade Float with a floral portrait. Each donor ranged in age and were from around the country.

Alex’s father Aaron Bush spoke with FOX5 at the Nevada Donor Network headquarters the day after the parade.

“I was happy, I was proud and I was super sad because there’s my son being honored on the float there and it’s not a moment I was able to share with him,” Aaron Bush said.

The Donate Life Float was called “Courage of Hope,” highlighting the courage of donor families, living donors, and waiting recipients.

Transplant recipients walked along the float or rode inside the gondolas, to inspire viewers to save and heal more than one million people in need.

Alex Bush was killed in February of 2020 when he and his younger sister Charlotte were walking home from Somerset Academy in North Las Vegas and were hit by a car while in a crosswalk. Police arrested the driver for distracted driving.

After his death, Bush donated his kidneys, heart, liver, corneas, and more than 300 grafts were created from his bones and tissue. In total Bush has helped 366 lives from around the world.

“He would’ve been so proud to know he was being honored in such a special way because he was able to help so many people,” Aaron Bush said.

Aaron and Jennifer Bush were able to decorate part of the float ahead of the parade along with other families.

“To be able to work on it was just something beyond anything I could’ve imagined cause it’s not just work you know you’re a part of something very special,” Aaron Bush said.

Members from the Nevada Donor Network contributed to building the float as well.

16,000 individual roses on the float were dedicated from somebody affected through organ donation.

“If you’re ever put in the situation that my wife and I were put in, it doesn’t pay to be selfish. There’s somebody who you might never meet who will be eternally grateful for the decisions that you’ve made. It could be a skin graft or it could be a vital organ but those people, those recipients would be forever grateful. And for myself that makes me feel good, knowing that 366 people all over the world have had their lives made better by my son’s gifts,” Aaron Bush said.

The Donate Life Float won the 2022 Rose Parade Extraordinaire Award.

If you don’t have an upcoming appointment at the DMV head to nvdonor.org to get registered.

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