Nova Scotia

Organ donation comforts volunteer firefighter's family

The family of Ben Baurin, the 20-year-old volunteer firefighter who died in a car crash in Dartmouth in April, recently learned how his organs are helping other people.

Ben Baurin's eyes, skin and bone are being used to help others after the Eastern Shore man died in April

Ben Baurin was a 20-year-old volunteer firefighter at Station 23 in Head of Chezzetcook, N.S. (Jeorge Sadi/CBC)

Bruno Baurin said a recent letter from the Nova Scotia Health Authority came as a surprise and left a lasting emotional impression on him and his wife.

The letter to the Eastern Shore family told about how the organs of their 20-year-old son, Ben, have helped others.

Ben's corneas allowed two people to see again. Tissue grafts from his eyes will assist up to eight people.

Bones will be used to produce tissues to repair fractures and his skin will be used on people who suffered critical burns.

"You know, his spirit and everything continues and he's doing the same great things now that he's passed," Bruno Baurin said.

Ben died last month in a car crash in Dartmouth.

The Head of Chezzetcook man had been an active volunteer firefighter at Station 23 Chezzetcook.

Bruno Baurin is Ben Baurin's father. (Jeorge Sadi/CBC)

Bruno Baurin said his son had registered as an organ donor.

"He [thought] that was a great idea, that if at some point in his life if he could help someone else he would and we agreed and supported him," Baurin said.

Even though Ben was not on duty at the time of the crash, Baurin said the firefighting community has been a huge support. There are now stickers on the back of fire trucks at Station 23 in memory of Ben.

Ben Baurin, centre, at his graduation from Halifax Fire and Emergency volunteer recruit training. (Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency)

He worked at Halifax Stanfield International Airport as a security screener and his coworkers there held a moment of silence for him.

"They actually asked passengers to not go through security for a minute or so. And we've never heard of that before," Baurin said.

The pet store where he used to work named a bird after him — Benny.

Baurin said his son loved animals and had a dog named Archer.

At the funeral, instead of flowers, the family asked for donations to the Nova Scotia SPCA.

"[Ben] came in the room and he would just brighten everything up, even ... to the day he had unfortunately passed away. He was just a happy-go-lucky kid and just enjoyed life to the fullest," Baurin said.

About the Author

Anjuli Patil


Anjuli Patil is a reporter and occasional video journalist with CBC Nova Scotia's digital team.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.