SHAWN ELIZABETH GUILLOT
Shawn Elizabeth Guillot was born July 5, 1976, the third child and only daughter of Don and Peggy Guillot. She was a special gift to her parents, who hoped for a baby sister for two brothers, Shannon and Shane. She was also a joyful gift to her grandparents, dozens of cousins, aunts, uncles, and to me, her godfather.
When I think of Shawn, I think of colors as bright as her smile, flowers because she was beautiful, and hearts because she loved people. These seemed the natural images for her quilt piece. The nine hearts represent the organs given from Shawn in hope that others might be helped to live. The ninth and largest heart, with her name written across it, represents Shawn’s loving essence and giving nature. Wanting to become a child psychologist, helping others came naturally to her. The decision to donate her organs is one she would have insisted upon.
The flowers represent the gift Shawn was to her family and friends. As spring flowers brighten a garden, Shawn brightened our lives with her delightful smile, loving kindness, and charming manner. The large rose under her name represents her youthful beauty. At fifteen years of age, she had the radiance of a pretty girl blooming into a beautiful young woman. The flowers, hearts, and ribbons surround Shawn’s name as she was usually surrounded by friends, who loved being with her.
Shawn’s tragic death devastated her family and friends. Our lives are forever changed, and each thought of her is another step into the grief of her loss. I believe that tragedy offers us an opportunity to create meaning. In donating her organs, Shawn and her family took a devastating tragedy and created the gift of continued life for six donor recipients.
When I think of Shawn now, almost six years after her death, I think of an angelic, winged, loving spirit, who as a final loving act gave a special gift before she left the earth. I see her soar heavenward with the beautiful wings of a butterfly, like the one next to her name on this memorial quilt patch.