Upstate woman gives gift of life, after unexpected death on Chri - FOX Carolina 21

Upstate woman gives gift of life, after unexpected death on Christmas Day

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Rudy Griffin with her sister (Source: Family) Rudy Griffin with her sister (Source: Family)
Rudy Griffin with her daughters (Source: Family) Rudy Griffin with her daughters (Source: Family)
Rudy's medallion from Donate Life SC (Source: Family) Rudy's medallion from Donate Life SC (Source: Family)
LAURENS, SC (FOX Carolina) -

The holidays took a tragic turn for an Upstate family after a Laurens County woman unexpectedly died on Christmas day.

Elizabeth ‘Rudy’ Griffin, 29, was rushed to the hospital days before Christmas. Griffin’s parents said she was having an asthma episode, a condition she had suffered with since she was a child.

Rudy's parents say she lost oxygen to her brain, and by the time she arrived at the ER it was too late to save her.

"I’m still in shock about it," said Roger Griffin, Rudy’s dad.

One day before Christmas, Rudy was on life support and declared brain dead.

“On Christmas Eve, I went back there to check on her and she wasn't doing better,” said Roger, “That’s when the doctors came in and pronounced her legally brain dead."

Rudy's family says the diagnosis was tough handle, but they got a glimmer of hope when they found out Rudy had registered as an organ donor.

“I went back there and prayed to God and begged Him,” said Roger, “All I could do was just respect her wishes as being an organ donor.”

Rudy was taken off life support and donated her organs on Christmas day. Her parents say she donated her heart, liver, eyes and bone marrow.

“Somebody’s heart can beat again on account of her,” said Haley Griffin, Rudy’s mom, “Somebody's liver is working again because of her and they donated bone marrow to St Jude.”

Rudy was not able to spend Christmas with her family, but her parents say she gave the ultimate gift.

“The best present you can give is life and she done that,” said Haley, “You can't get a better Christmas than that.”

Her parents say Christmas will never be the same but they find comfort knowing their daughter lives on through others.

“I lost my daughter but I gained an angel and a hero,” said Roger.

Rudy leaves behind two young daughters. A You Caring account has been setup to help with Rudy's funeral expenses and help with her daughter's care.

Find out more about becoming an organ donor here.

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