Mother of 5-year-old killed in I-10 crash meets woman saved by son's organ donation
BATON ROUGE - The Our Lady of the Lake Hospital and the Louisiana Organ Procurement Agency held a special ceremony for the families of organ donors in the year of 2017.
One of the organ donors, 5-year-old Xander Benoit was killed in a car accident on I-10 near LA 415. Xander had ambitions to one day become a police officer and help save the lives of others.
"He was a powerful soul", said Xander's mother, Maegen Benoit.
Still grieving and recovering from the injuries she received in the crash, Benoit believes this ceremony has helped her to receive peace.
"We still have to get on the road every day... It's a dangerous place, and you know he protects us," Benoit said.
Both of Xander's kidneys were donated to Zachary native, Tamara Huggin, who was once receiving dialysis. Huggins says receiving two kidneys from a five-year-old boy was disheartening, but now she's looking at this opportunity as a blessing.
"He grew that baby for me," said Huggin.
Huggins attended today's ceremony and release two butterflies in Xander's honor. After releasing the butterflies, one stuck to her shoulder for a while before it flew away.
"I cried because I felt like I was you know, I'm old and this baby hadn't had a chance. But you know God works in mysterious ways," Huggin said.
Huggin plans to become an advocate for organ donation.