I have the honor of presenting the recipients, living donors, donor families and supporters that ARE Team Texas. (we are missing a few folks from this picture) Our first day here in Grand Rapids has been nothing short of inspiring!! Everyone arrived at various times and through various forms of transportation. It is beyond words to watch people and see everyone come together from all corners of these great United States and instantly bond over their excitement and enthusiasm for the games. Within minutes of being here new friendships were being forged and old ones renewed. I had the good fortune to see one of my recipients who was on the very first team I took to the games back in 1994. For me as a Transplant Coordinator, to see Rita still enjoying the fullness of life 18 years after transplant is beyond any words as evidenced by the fact that when I saw her I cried like a child. The pin trading has already gone into a frenzied mode. For those of you unfamilar with this tradition, athletes trade pins representing their state with each other to try and get a collection of pins from every state represented at the games. From those people who have done this many times before to those who are the "rookies" everyone shares a common bond and a relization that they are here and able to be a part of this life event because of their donor. We had the good fortune to have our LifeGift donor quilt grace the wall of our hospitality room today before it goes to be displayed throughout the games. I pause here to honor the beautiful souls that are not only represented on that quilt but to all donors who are ever present through their gift of life to others.