Memories Made in Love

Katrina Gustafson

February 16, 1988 - January 22, 2004

Donor, Minnesota

At nearly 16, Katrina was starting to make her own choices. She was blossoming, finding her voice and making decisions based on her own wants and desires. She was just starting to tell the world who she was and who she wanted to be.

Katrina was so full of life, just starting to find her true self.

Deb and Tom, Katrina’s parents, describe a daughter who was active, slim, and sometimes shy, but always able to eat an entire #3 at McDonald’s—that’s a Quarter Pounder with cheese, in case you were wondering. Nikia, her older sister, talks about Katrina’s love of ice skating and her teen adventures as a young girl growing into her womanhood.

Skating was Katrina’s passion. Her dedication was her own—she always wanted to be on the ice. As her mother says, “It was her canvas.” She could move and glide and twirl and spin, all to express her thoughts, her ideas, her feelings, and her beliefs.

Not yet 16, Katrina was coming into her own. A teen, an ice skater, a young woman with a canvas to fill.

Then, a car accident left Katrina with life-ending injuries. In the midst of sorrow and tragedy, Deb and Tom made the decision to give others in need the gifts of life and healing by working with LifeSource to help Katrina become a donor.

Katrina’s canvas, her expression, her blossoming young life was cut short. In that brevity, though, her parents saw hope. Their daughter could help others through donation and transplantation.

Today, the Gustafson family finds peace in the fact that Katrina helped others live longer, stronger, healthier lives. Her legacy is ongoing. Her hometown ice rink features her name, and honors both her talents and her gifts of life. Her canvas has been covered with the hope and light and life she gave to others. At not yet 16, she made a difference in this world.

Forever in our Hearts, Dad, Mom and Nikia