Slain Mesa County sher­iff’s deputy Derek Geer was a hero in life and in death.

The Denver Post - - NEWS -

What a poised and beau­ti­ful mes­sage Kate Geer shared with The Den­ver Post this month as she mourns the loss of her hus­band, Mesa County sher­iff ’s Deputy Derek Geer, and urges oth­ers to be­come or­gan donors.

“Ob­vi­ously, we’re still griev­ing. We will al­ways grieve. But know­ing that los­ing his life wasn’t in vain, know­ing that four fam­i­lies are still cel­e­brat­ing their loved ones, it gives me com­fort,” Kate Geer told Den­ver Post re­porter Jesse Paul. We are moved by her words. Derek Geer is a hero. The Navy vet­eran served to pro­tect the peo­ple of Mesa County and died in the line of duty when a sus­pect shot him in Fe­bru­ary. Geer was try­ing to stop a 17-year-old wanted for vi­o­la­tion of his pro­ba­tion for a sex-of­fender charge when the teen ran. Au­thor­i­ties say Geer at­tempted to use his stun gun to stop the man from flee­ing but was in­stead shot and killed.

Geer de­serves our re­spect and honor for his ser­vice.

He be­came a hero a sec­ond time by do­nat­ing his or­gans. Four in­di­vid­u­als now benefit from Geer’s post­hu­mous gift. His heart, liver and kid­neys all went to oth­ers in need.

For those equally moved by this story, one way to honor Kate and Derek Geer is to be­come an or­gan and tis­sue donor.

Donor Al­liance, the des­ig­nated non-profit that han­dles or­gan and tis­sue do­na­tions in Colorado and Wy­oming, es­ti­mates 67 per­cent of Coloradans are al­ready signed up as donors.

Visit DonateLifeColorado.org to reg­is­ter to be an or­gan donor in Colorado or call 303-329-4747 or 888-256-4386. The Donor Al­liance is the state-des­ig­nated af­fil­i­ate for or­gan donation reg­istry.

Those want­ing to go a step fur­ther this hol­i­day sea­son can sign up to be­come a liv­ing bone mar­row donor. The odds of be­ing a close enough ge­netic match to some­one to be­come a donor are slim but still sig­nif­i­cant. A sim­ple swab of your cheek puts you on a reg­istry that could pos­si­bly make you a life-sav­ing donor for some­one in need. Visit bethe­match.org to find out how you can join the Na­tional Mar­row Donor Pro­gram.

If that’s go­ing too far, con­sider do­nat­ing blood or plasma on a reg­u­lar ba­sis through the group of your choos­ing. There are many won­der­ful or­ga­ni­za­tions that col­lect blood do­na­tions, but Bon­fils Blood Cen­ter is one of Colorado’s largest non-profit donor banks. Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal Colorado also has a blood donor bank — at its main fa­cil­ity on the An­schutz Med­i­cal Cam­pus in Aurora and a mo­bile donor unit that trav­els through­out the com­mu­nity.

There are so many sto­ries of tragedy and heart­break.

So of­ten there is noth­ing we can do to help.

But Kate and Derek Geer have re­minded us that for a sick per­son in need there is some­thing we can do, to­day, that may help.

Christo­pher Tom­lin­son, Grand Junc­tion Sen­tinel

Pall­bear­ers carry the cas­ket of Mesa County sher­iff ’s Deputy Derek Geer on Feb. 15 at Canyon View Vine­yard Church in Grand Junc­tion.

Geer saved the lives of four peo­ple when his heart, liver and kid­neys were do­nated. Mesa County Sher­iff’s Of­fice

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