Versiti - Calvin Shields III | Impact Stories

Calvin Shields III

“Calvin was a giver in life, and he was a giver in death. I’m so proud of him.”

Calvin Shields III

“Calvin was a breath of fresh air when my mom had him,” says Calvin Shields’ sister, Samantha. “We were so happy, because he brought our parents and family so much joy.”

Growing up, Samantha describes Calvin as a prankster who loved to play jokes on his brother and push the envelope. But he always remained close to the ones he loved the most. “We were really close,” Samantha says. “Every house I’ve moved into, he’s always been there for me, always helped me, always helped me with my kids.”

One day, while Calvin drove Samantha to the grocery store, she noticed he had the little orange dot on his driver’s license that indicated he registered to be an organ and tissue donor in the event of his passing—something that Samantha was happy to see. “Calvin was a good person; he would do anything for anybody,” she says. “It didn’t surprise me that he was an organ donor.”

Unfortunately, Calvin suffered from a progressive illness that eventually led to his hospitalization. While there, he went into cardiac arrest and lost oxygen to his brain during open-heart surgery. Sadly, he was given no hope of recovery, and his parents made the courageous decision to move forward with organ donation. Calvin was able to donate his liver to help others in need. “He is my hero, because even in death, he was helping somebody,” Samantha says. “I understand that he completed his assignment.”

Now, Samantha is on a mission to educate the African American community—especially men—about the importance of preventative healthcare, as well as joining the organ, tissue and eye donor registry. “Calvin and I were raised that life is about giving to the next generation and making them better,” she says. “Why not give the gift of life to somebody else?”

“Calvin was a giver in life, and he was a giver in death,” Samantha adds. “I’m so proud of him.”

Every 10 minutes, someone is added to the organ transplant waiting list.

Approximately 113,000 men, women, and children are waiting for life-saving organ transplants. One organ donor has the power to save up to eight lives and change the outcomes of someone’s world forever by giving them a second chance. Additionally, tissue donation can save and improve the lives of up to 75 people with their gifts. You can make a huge impact by registering as an organ and tissue donor.

Learn more about organ and tissue donation, or register as a donor at

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Become an Organ and Tissue Donor
Learn more about how to sign up as an organ, tissue and eye donor and how organ donation saves and enhances lives in our communities.
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Impact Stories
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