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Edison woman remembered for life of caring for others continues to do so upon death through organ donation

Karen Ann Strittmatter-Sesta of Edison will always be remembered by her loved ones for her selfless nature in putting the needs of others first.

She lived her entire life in Edison, Woodbridge and Iselin.

She died on Feb. 5 at age 58.

“Aunt Karen’s greatest joy in life was taking care of others,” said Stacy Strittmatter, Strittmatter-Sesta’s niece/Goddaughter. “Even on days when her body was too tired and her breathing was too labored to physically care for others, she offered endless laughs to her family and friends and provided emotional encouragement to members in her online support groups.”

Strittmatter-Sesta spent her entire professional career providing compassionate care to patients in all settings, including nursing and group homes, home health care, rehabilitation facilities and an extended recovery unit for those affected by traumatic brain injuries. She also cared for her brother, Tommy, who, prior to his passing, was bed-bound due to severe medical issues.

Kare Strittmatter-Sesta’s family has found some peace in knowing that her organ and tissue donation helped make a lasting impact in the lives of others. Strittmatter-Sesta’s gifts of her liver and kidneys saved the lives of three people through successful transplants. She also enhanced the lives over 75 individuals through her tissue donation.

“We are thankful for the wonderful care and support of the professional teams at NJ Sharing Network,” Strittmatter said. “This has given us all some solace during this heart wrenching time. We know that even though Aunt Karen is roller skating among the angels, she continues to live on in those whose lives she saved and enhanced. She is now our family’s guardian angel and an altruistic hero to many families.”

Strittmatter-Sesta’s daughter, Amber Sesta, her sister, Susie Strittmatter, and Stacy Strittmatter fondly remember the moments in life that Strittmatter-Sesta enjoyed the most, including family vacations down the shore, crabbing and fishing, roller skating, trips to Atlantic City, listening to music, cooking, and spoiling her cat, Downy.

“Time is seemingly infinite and you always think that you will have more of it. You always think that there will be one more holiday, one more family vacation, one more dinner get-together, one more birthday, one more 1:00 a.m. text and one more hug,” Stacy Strittmatter said. “Thanks to the gift of life that Aunt Karen gave, at least three families will be able to have ‘one more moment’ with their loved ones.”

In New Jersey, there are nearly 4,000 residents currently waiting for a lifesaving transplant, and one person in New Jersey dies every three days waiting for a transplant. Just one organ and tissue donor can save eight lives and enhance the lives of over 75 people. Transplantable organs include heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, pancreas and intestine. Transplantable tissue includes corneas, heart valves, skin grafts, and bone grafts, ligament and tendons.

To learn more, get involved and register as an organ and tissue donor, visit www.NJSharingNetwork.org.

  • This article was provided by NJ Sharing Network
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