Stone Ridge Farms
7312 Boozy Creek Road • Bristol • Virginia

Meredith Haga Foundation

Meredith grew up on Stone Ridge Farm in Bristol, Virginia, where she was an avid equestrian and animal lover. Participating in equestrian competitions at a young age, Meredith was up for a challenge, and in her teenage years this attribute would help save her life. In 2012, Meredith received a living kidney transplant, which instilled a passion of advocating for organ donation. Meredith’s dad, Bruce Blessing, was a perfect match for Meredith, not only in matching kidneys, but also in life. Bruce and Meredith spent endless time on the farm working with her horses, working the grounds, working the cattle, and building a strong bond like no other.

After months of tests and waiting, the day of the transplant finally arrived, and Meredith and Bruce arrived at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in Richmond. As they were getting out of the car and walking into the hospital, Meredith told Bruce that if he changed his mind, she would understand and not love him any less. Bruce (being Bruce) told her to hurry up and get this over. He had work to do. With that same determination, Bruce would win their bet of who would visit the other’s room first after the successful transplant.

Knowing Bruce’s gift of his kidney was saving her life, Meredith was receiving a second chance. Meredith knew this was the greatest gift she would ever receive. She would be able to do simple things in life that are often taken for granted. Meredith was excited to be able to do things like go to the grocery store, clean her home, and take a shower.

Meredith lived a very full life and reached many milestones. She graduated from Sweet Briar College in Virginia with honors, got married, and pursued her career of advocating for organ donation.

First serving as an intern for DCI Donor Services, Inc., in Nashville, Tennessee, Meredith confirmed her passion for working with people whose lives had been touched by organ donation. After graduation, she began her professional career with Tennessee Donor Services as the Public Education Coordinator in East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. She traveled across the regions sharing her story about organ donation, and encouraging everyone she met to “Sign Up and Save Lives.” Wanting to do even more, Meredith accepted a position in Richmond with LifeNet Health as an Organ Recovery Coordinator. There she traveled the country to bring needed organs back to the recipients.

 Filling her life supporting organ donation, Meredith passed away on July 20, 2018. Even in her passing, she stayed true to her mission. Meredith donated her corneas to give someone the gift of sight. This gift allowed someone to see the beauty of the world around him/her, but also the amazing milestones in his/her life to come. She also donated her lungs to Vanderbilt University in Nashville for research to find medical advancements to help others suffering from immunosuppression.

Meredith was laid to rest at Stone Ridge Farm, where her family resides. They continue Meredith’s work to keep her legacy alive by sharing her story and the importance of organ donation.

The Meredith Haga Foundation was established to serve others in honor of Meredith, who she dedicated her life to saving lives. The Foundation serves in three aspects of service. One to help those who are going through the living donation process to offset the expenses for the living donor and the recipient. Secondly, to offer academic assistance to a student who has a direct connection with organ donation. Thirdly, to aide in community outreach projects that reach out to the community to educate on the importance of signing up to be an organ donor. 

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