This is the 12th year of the memorial service that honors family members by recognizing the contribution of their loved ones who gave a special gift to the study of medicine. Students from the medical, physician assistant, occupational therapy and physical therapy programs along with faculty and staff will share testimonials and their appreciation to family members in attendance.

“The body donation program’s memorial service is an important opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to show our appreciation for our donors’ selfless gifts. The service also allows us to honor the family and friends who supported their loved one’s wishes,” said Sara Bird, coordinator of USD’s body donor program.

The Sanford School of Medicine and the School of Health Sciences rely on the voluntary donation of bodies for medical and other professional health programs. Body donations are crucial in teaching gross anatomy as the foundation for physicians, physician assistants, nurses, dentists, dental hygienists, occupational and physical therapists, and paramedics.

"The anatomy laboratory is a unique educational experience, and the memorial service is an integral aspect of that experience," said Dr. Stuart Inglis, director of medical anatomical laboratories. "Students have an opportunity to express their gratitude to the donors’ families and to gain an appreciation of the rich and fulfilling lives that these people have led."

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