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Fallen deputy's widow presented with check, flag

Presentations made as Orange Park Medical Center unveiled new donor wall

ORANGE PARK, Fla. – Orange Park Medical Center unveiled its new donor wall Friday to kick off National Donate Life Month. 

Anna Zirbel, the widow of fallen Clay County Deputy Ben Zirbel, was invited to be one of the speakers at the event. Ben Zirbel was a registered organ donor and shortly after his death, Anna Zirbel also signed up to become an organ donor. 

During the event, Clay County Sheriff Darryl Daniels, on behalf of the Orange Park Medical Center Board of Trustees, presented Anna Zirbel a $2,000 check for the Memorial Ride for the Fallen. The money will go toward the Clay County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Unit’s trip to Washington, D.C., in May to honor Ben Zirbel and see the unveiling of his name on the Police Memorial Wall.

The hospital also presented Anna Zirbel with the flag that the hospital flew while he was undergoing his organ donation surgery.

It’s been nearly eight months since Ben Zirbel died in the line of duty. He was killed in a crash last August. Troopers said his patrol motorcycle crashed into a trailer attached to a car that failed to yield the right of way. Shortly after his death, his widow said the small comfort in her grief was knowing that he may still help save other people’s lives because he was an organ donor.

According to OrganDonor.Org, one donor can save eight lives, but only 58% of adults in the United States are signed up to donate their organs. As of January, there were roughly 113,000 adults and children on the national transplant waiting list.

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