Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Organ Donations Show the Ultimate Generosity

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Organ Donations Show the Ultimate Generosity

Article excerpt

Dear Ann Landers: For as many years as I have been reading your column, you have urged your readers to carry donor cards or leave their remains to a medical school. I was considering both options seriously, and then I saw this write-up in a New York paper that blew me away.

There is a store in Manhattan where a full human skeleton can be purchased for $3,000 and a skull can be rented for $65 a day. Human bones are displayed in jars, while skulls sit on shelves. At one time, the owner had a human skeleton outside his shop to attract customers, but passersby kept stealing the teeth as well as some of the smaller bones, so he had to bring the skeleton inside.

Human skulls range from $195 to $925. They go quickly, according to the owner. A human rib will fetch $9 and a vertebrae $18. When asked by a reporter, "Where do you get your skeletons and bones?" the owner of the store replied, "From medical schools and laboratories."

Please look into this, Miss Landers. If it is true that medical schools are selling bones, perhaps a great many people will change their wills.

St. Louis Reader

We contacted that store in Manhattan, as well as its sources for human bones. The suppliers said, "We no longer sell human bones. We used to get them from India, but there is now a ban on selling them. Now we use only plastic."

I hope that hyped-up story you read in the press will not discourage people from being organ donors. This would be a tragedy.

To be able to restore sight to someone who is blind or give additional years of life to a person whose kidneys no longer function is the ultimate act of generosity.

*****

Dear Ann Landers: I was interested in the letter from the doctor in Asheville, N. …

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