Alex O'Loughlin, spokesperson for Taylor’s Gift and lead actor on the hit CBS television series Hawaii Five-0 recently sat down with us for an interview. We asked him several questions about his thoughts on organ donation and his experience with Taylor’s Gift. His passion for our mission is admirable and we hope you sit back and enjoy reading this incredible interview with Alex.
TGF: Hello Alex, thank you for taking time to answer a few questions for us. We absolutely love the work that you do to share the mission and message of Taylor’s Gift! We'd like to ask you some questions related to your involvement with the Foundation and what “Outlive Yourself” means to you!
What made Taylor's Gift Foundation stand out to you when you initially learned about the Foundation?
- AO: I was on Three Rivers at the time, which was all about transplant medicine and the importance of it. I had been working with Donate Life America in a spokesperson type role and when I heard Taylor's story I was deeply moved. This is what the whole thing is about. The way her parents keep her memory alive is inspirational and life giving.
TGF: Why was the Taylor’s Gift story so meaningful to you to take action?
- AO: I suppose I had never actually met anyone who had been so directly affected by organ donation before. To hear Taylor's story, especially from her own parents was profoundly moving. It's also a profoundly human story. That one young girl’s terrible misfortune could be turned around to save multiple lives...It still astonishes me and as a parent, to see the strength and spirit in Tara & Todd and how they have, and continue to handle Taylor's passing gives me hope for my own capacity to be human.
TGF: Why do you think it's important to increase the conversation about the importance of organ donation?
- AO: I don't think organ donation is something people talk about much because it can be confusing. Sometimes even people who are registered organ donors can feel like they should change their mind after a while. Talking about it, the importance of it, and the impact organ donation can have on the lives of others brings us back to the real reasons we become passionate about it. Because it's an opportunity to do something incredibly powerful.
TGF: Why did you want to support Taylor's Gift as a spokesperson?
- AO: I really believed in their mission and what they stood for. I also thought I might be able to make a difference. They were doing such a great job with something so important, I knew that if more people in the world could see what Taylor's parents were doing in her memory that it would inspire more support for the organization but also inspire more change in people's beliefs and attitudes.
TGF: Have you seen others in your life affected by the “Outlive Yourself” mentality?
- AO: To be honest it's a tough one. I'm pretty passionate about it but some people just can't get their head around it. I think they feel so attached to their organs that they can't imagine or handle the thought of someone taking them after death. I do think, however, that people close to me have been moved by the sentiment. I have seen my friends and family have moments where they each really think hard about it and that is the reason I'm doing this. If I can get someone to stop what they're doing and actually contemplate the Outlive Yourself mentality, it's a good day.
TGF: What does the phrase, “Outlive Yourself” mean to you?
- AO: I have a little saying- "This whole Being Human thing, it's the toughest gig in town". And I mean it, it really is an enormous challenge. Being human and walking the earth is a tough ask and if we can give each other a little help along the way then I say we do. We are after all, essentially all the same.To Outlive Yourself means making a difference in the lives of others.
TGF: Why should someone support Taylor's Gift Foundation?
- AO: Because it represents humanity in a way that is rare and special.
We are thrilled that Alex has joined us on this incredible journey with Taylor’s Gift to Regift Life, Renew Health and Restore Families. Join Alex and the countless others who have registered to be an organ donor and Outlive Yourself by clicking the link above! If you’d like to find out more ways to get involved with our work at Taylor’s Gift, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or click here to support our work directly!