Virginia Woman Pays it Forward as Organ Donor

Brittany Hoover | Organ donor

Brittany Hoover’s family remembers her as a kind, loving, and strong woman who could make her own way in life. Growing up in Virginia Beach, she started helping in her family’s floral business from a young age. She was an avid animal lover, particularly when it came to cats, and was known to give strays a home.

Brittany’s grandmother tried to get her to wear pretty dresses and pink bows, but Brittany wasn’t having it. She preferred her hair up in a bun and prided herself on competing in sports like soccer, field hockey, and basketball. She believed in paying it forward by coaching youth teams.

As an adult, Brittany decided to venture beyond her hometown. She traveled to California, where her late father was from, before making her home in Lynchburg, Va., where she lived for eight years. She landed a job with Food Lion, a place she loved working and made lasting friendships.

On March 26, 2022, Brittany unexpectedly passed away from cardiac arrest at the age of 32. Her family, shocked and devastated, learned she was a registered donor and made sure her wish to help others was honored.

As a result, Brittany has become a hero by saving lives and giving hope to others. The woman who received her heart was able to watch her kids graduate from college. A teenage boy who received her kidney can again enjoy favorite activities, including riding his bike. Another kidney recipient can plan to start a family with his wife. Brittany’s liver saved a man’s life. The gift of her corneas restored sight for two people.

She is missed dearly by her mother, sister, grandparents, friends, and her two nieces, who refer to her as “GeeGee.” Brittany’s mother, Vivian, leads the charge when it comes to making sure she is honored in every way possible. “I just want everyone to know what a hero she is, and how selfless she was in her final moments,” Vivian said. “It’s about keeping her memory alive.”

Brittany was selected to be honored in the 2023 Rose Parade as part of the Donate Life float, with her mother and sister traveling to Pasadena, Calif., to be a part of the event. “As kids, she was my protector,” said Brittany’s sister, Courtney Johnson. “She is deeply missed. And now I'm the protector of her memory.”