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Organs of U.S. Boy Who Was Slain in Italy Are Donated

October 03, 1994| From Times Wire Services

ROME — The organs of a vacationing 7-year-old California boy who was killed by highway robbers were donated Sunday to give five other people a chance at life.

Nicholas Green of Bodega Bay died Saturday in Sicily after being in a coma since Thursday, when he was shot in the head while riding with family members along a stretch of roadway in southern Italy.

Shortly after midnight, doctors detached life support equipment and removed his heart, liver, kidneys and pancreas.

The boy's father, Reginald Green, said Nicholas' life was wasted but that he and his wife wanted their son's "very strong heart" and other organs donated to other children in the land Nicholas had grown to like during his visit.

Nicholas' heart was given to a 15-year-old boy named Andrea Mongiardo, whose heart problems have stunted his growth.

Nicholas' liver was donated to a 19-year-old Sicilian woman, and his kidneys went to two children from the south. His pancreas went to a diabetic patient in Perugia.

Health Minister Raffaele Costa said he hoped the Greens' example will help change attitudes in Italy, which has one of Europe's lowest rates of organ donation.

"I am glad it went well," Margaret Green said, referring to the heart operation. "It means his death wasn't meaningless.

"I would have liked him to live a long time. Now I wish the same thing for his heart," she added.

The Green family was vacationing in Italy and heading for Sicily when the attack took place in the Calabria region.

Italian authorities have ordered increased patrols of the stretch of highway where the shooting took place, which is known for holdups of trucks and cars.

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