Annual Memorial Celebration

In light of ongoing developments resulting from the coronavirus, Research For Life regrets canceling the memorial services for 2020, 2021 and 2022. We are hoping to continue the tradition in 2023.

This decision was made for the safety and well-being of our event staff, participants, and the community. We will continue to monitor all the appropriate medical advice and encourage everyone to take all reasonable precautions.

Thank you for your cooperation, understanding and hope you stay healthy.

April is National Donor Month

Each year during April, National Donor Month promotes the importance of organ, eye, tissue, and whole body donation. Throughout the United States National Donor Month features local, regional and national activities to help inspire Americans to register as organ, eye, tissue, and whole body donors, and to celebrate those who have saved lives through the gift of donation.

Research For Life encourages everyone to participate and learn more about how these donors have helped to save lives.

“We welcome you to join us in the celebration of those who have given the ultimate gift to humanity. Thanks to donors and their families, we have hope for more active, healthier, and longer lives. Please bring your family and friends, all are welcome.”

– Laurie Shreves, Director of Family Services at Research For Life

Video Content: 2019 Research For Life Annual Memorial Celebration –
Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix, AZ & Lorimar Vineyards & Winery, Temecula, CA

Research For Life Annual Memorial Celebration – Arizona

EVENT CANCELLED: Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, AZ on April 11th, 2020 at 10:00AM PST

Admission into the garden for the day is included with your attendance at the Memorial Celebration.

Desert Botanical Garden is home to tens of thousands of species of cactus, trees, and flowers from all around the world spread across 55 acres in Phoenix, Arizona. The garden includes collections from Baja California, Australia, and South America representing various ecosystems. Some of the other features of the garden include a butterfly enclosure, art exhibits, and the Desert Landscape School.

Desert Botanical Garden has been designated as a Phoenix Point of Pride. Learn more about the Desert Botanical Garden.

Unusual blue flowering plant
Outdoor patio at Desert Botanical Garden
Tall purple plants and white tree
Spiky blue plant shaped like a ball
Desert path with flowers and tress
Sunset behind mountains

Research For Life Annual Memorial Celebration – California

EVENT CANCELLED: Lorimar Vineyards & Winery in Temecula, CA on April 25th, 2020 at 10:00AM PST

There will be a sparkling wine toast provided for all attendees at the Memorial Celebration. So that everyone can join us in the toast, a non-alcoholic version of the sparkling wine will be available.

Lorimar Vineyards & Winery is a Tuscan-style winery in the heart of the Temecula Valley. Featuring breathtaking views of Mount Palomar and the Santa Ana Mountains, Lorimar is the perfect picturesque setting to listen to live music, peruse local artwork, experience gourmet food, and enjoy award-winning wine.

Learn more about Lorimar Vineyards & Winery.

Staircase entry to Lorimar Vineyards and Winery
Reflection pool with water fountain in the center
Vineyards located in a courtyard
Trellised walkwat with andirondak chairs
Outdoor patio with patio table and chairs and a garden
Sweeping view of the vineyards


In light of ongoing developments resulting from the coronavirus, Research For Life regrets canceling the memorial services for 2020, 2021 and 2022. We hope to continue the tradition in 2023.

If you have any questions, 2019 donor families can call 800.229.3244.

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Research For Life - Understanding Whole Body Donor Consent

Hello, my name is Garland Shreves, CEO of Research For Life. I want to take a moment to discuss some very basic information with you regarding consent forms, in general, that you may encounter when considering to donate to a whole body donor organization.

First and foremost, you need to understand and read the consent form, also known as the authorization form or document of gift, so you know what you are consenting to.  Ask questions of the organization if you don’t understand something. 

 All states require, under the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act, that consent be granted by an authorized agent of the donor or self-authorization before death.

Each state defines who in the consenting class has the most authority to direct donation. Such as the medical power of attorney, spouse, children, grandchildren, siblings, etc. and differs slightly in each state. 

Consent may be given by means of a verbal recorded consent or by a written document of gift.

Research For Life uses a written consent form which can be found on our website.

Understand that the donor or authorizing agent is giving the body to an organization. Once given it belongs to the organization to use in accordance with the consent form.

In other words, the donor organization is free to use the donor provided it does so within the terms

of the consent, it may not use the donor in a manner not consented too.  

The consent may state how the body may be used.  Educational and/or research purposes or some other purpose may be stated or in the discretion of the donor organization.

Research For Life provides cadavers and/or anatomical specimens for education and research purposes and does not do ballistic testing.

The consent may state that the body will be used in whole or in parts. It may also state that the anatomical parts may be used domestically and or internationally.

And most consents will cover some basic things like consent to test the donor for diseases and order medical records to help best determine the medical suitability for the donation.

The consent may also touch on issues like for profit or nonprofit status and if the donor or anatomical specimens will be used by one or more or both types of entities.  Remember that regardless of an organizations tax status they all charge fees to end users who order anatomical specimens and offer those specimens to both for profit and nonprofit entities.

From the very start of the donation process costs to the donor organization begin. 24-hour answering service, transport team to respond 24/7, qualified trained staff paid a livable wage with benefits and retirement, electric, gas, phone, insurances, building payments, maintenance, medical director, and regulatory requirements, and cremation fees. And these are just some of the expenses that an organization may have to cover.

Another item you may see on most authorization forms is a release of liability, a hold harmless agreement, excluding misconduct of course.  

Research For Life states clearly it will not and donor or agent agrees that Research For Life will not be held responsible for acts of third parties in connection with the donation.

Another item that reduces a donor organizations liability is the Anatomical Gift Act prohibits criminal, civil or administrative actions provided there is no intentional misconduct on the part of the donor organization. In other words, if the donor organization acted in good faith it is immune and provided some protection from lawsuits.

Another important part on a consent form is the person signing the authorization attests (affirms) that they have the authority to direct the donation. The donor organization accepts the authorizing agent’s authority in good faith barring any information known to it at the time of donation that would contradict the authority of the person authorizing donation.    

Remember, should you decide to register, tell your family and friends about your decision.

Also, the donation authorization form is not valid until notarized or signed by two witnesses; one witness must be non-family or disinterested party. 

Consent forms contain other important information that you need to read and understand.

All documents of gift or authorizations can be cancelled prior to death.

I want to thank you for taking the time to watch this video and I hope it helped provide you with some basic information regarding whole body donation consent forms.  Thank you.