Fallen FDNY firefighter's legacy lives on through his donated organs

Darla Miles Image
Tuesday, February 14, 2023
Fallen firefighter's legacy lives on through his donated organs
FDNY Firefighter Billy Moon's selfless organ donations are helping to spread awareness about the importance of organ donation registration.

HAUPPAUGE, Long Island (WABC) -- The selfless organ donations of a fallen firefighter on Long Island are helping to spread awareness and education on the importance of organ donation registration.

"I'm here to tell you that it's okay to talk about your wishes and what you would want happen when you die," widow Kristin Moon said.

At the age of 47, FDNY Firefighter Billy Moon died too young. He was a husband and father of two young children.

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"On a day of love, I am able to express my own love for my husband Billy," Moon said. "As I talk about him and his organ donation, which I can proudly say is his legacy."

The 20-year veteran died in December after falling 20 feet in an accident in Brooklyn, suffering a fatal injury. His legacy is highlighted on National Donor Day.

"Currently 500, nearly 576,000 Suffolk County residents are registered to be organ donors," Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said. "Today, our hope on National Donor Day is that we can increase that number."

In Hauppauge Tuesday afternoon, elected officials and families of donors shared their gratitude for the organ donors who have given them more time with their loved ones.

"This is Nicholas Brown who is a U.S. Marine," said Michelle Martinez, mother of an organ recipient. "He said yes, and his family said yes and without them, my son wouldn't be here."

From 2021 to 2022, organ donation registration in New York has increased 19% and transplanted organs, 24%. The progress is attributed to the increased awareness and education from families telling their stories, like Moon's widow.

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"We know we will get rid of these myths, misconceptions, the urban legends," LiveOnNY President and CEO Leonard Achan said. "Everyone here today represents getting rid of that."

It's a stigma Billy Moon and his family dealt with long before his death as his donated organs saved the lives of five people.

"Have the conversation with your family, right, like Billy Moon did," Achan said. "Let people know you're willing to do that when you can't take this with you. You're able to live on, have a legacy through organ and tissue donation."


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