Upstate Professor, Tissue Recipient To Participate In Donate Life Rose Parade Float

An Upstate man will soon be headed to California to participate in the annual Rose Parade – but this trip isn’t just about the famous floats or the football.

Anderson University Professor Miren Ivankovic is one of 24 people selected from across the country to participate in the Donate Life Rose Parade Float.

Ivankovic had severe arthritis in both his hips. His doctor had to do surgery and use donated bone to make it possible.

“In my case, I received a deceased person’s bone, that was used during my hip surgery,” Ivankovic explained.

The tissue recipient took home six gold medals in the 2014 Donate Life Transplant Games of America.

As millions watch the Rose Parade and see the message, Ivankovic hopes more people will learn about organ and tissue donations and hear his story of how those donations can change lives.

“There are shortages and because it’s a shortage, people are dying, in the thousands every year, because they don’t receive a life-saving organ.”

Ivankovic is the first from the Upstate and only the third from South Carolina to ride the Donate Life Rose Parade float.

According to Donate Life South Carolina, 22 people die every day In the U.S. because a life-saving organ isn’t available.

A single organ donor can help about 50 other people.

Right now, there are more than 100 thousand candidates on the national organ transplant waiting list.

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