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  • Annual Gift Body Memorial Service a Celebration of Hope and Heart

    Gift Body Memorial KANSAS CITY, Mo. (May 2, 2014) – Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences (KCUMB) hosted the 23rd Annual Anatomical Memorial Service today on its campus in Northeast Kansas City, Mo., honoring those who donated their bodies to be used for study by osteopathic medical students.

    Jim Mitchell, keynote speaker and resident of Kansas City, spoke to students and to loved ones of donors, emphasizing the magnitude and impact of the gift by those who gave their bodies for the purpose of teaching.

    “We are here to honor those who gave, that others might learn,” Mitchell said. “There are things you simply can’t learn by the printed page, by the spoken word or by film.
    There are things you can only learn by hands-on experience.

    “The influence of these donors will be felt around the world. Wherever these students go, your loved one will be going with them.”

    Mitchell has delivered the keynote address for every memorial service since KCUMB began the annual tradition in 1991. He says it is a supreme honor, yet a bittersweet experience. Mitchell’s wife of 55 years was honored two years ago when she passed away and donated her body to KCUMB.

    “You’re caught between pain and pride,” Mitchell said. “This, I can promise … long after the tears have dried and the pain has diminished, the pride will remain.”

    The annual service is an opportunity for KCUMB’s medical students to express their appreciation to the families of individuals who gifted their bodies. In tributes to individual donors, students refer to their gift body as an “act of generosity,” “the best gift I could have ever received,” and “a gift for which I will forever be in debt.”

    Approximately 50 bodies are used each year by first- and second year osteopathic medical students at KCUMB for the purpose of studying anatomy.

    About KCUMB
    Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, founded in 1916, is a fully accredited, private university, with a College of Biosciences and a College of Osteopathic Medicine.  The College of Osteopathic Medicine is the oldest medical school in Kansas City, Mo., and the largest in the state. It is the second-leading provider of physicians within the states of Missouri and Kansas, with nearly 70 percent practicing in a primary care specialty.

    Posted: 05/02/2014

    Category: Students, Faculty, Outreach, Osteopathic Medicine, Events, General