Remembering Amy Harju: A gift of life so bold

A community is made up of all kinds of people, many who strive to make it a better place.

Some of these contributors are well known but there are others who do for their neighbors without thought of being recognized.

Amy Harju was one of those folks making our area a better place. It’s not that she was quiet — she was bubbly in nature and a positive force whose energy was amazing.

Her main cause? Organ donation.

A age 32, Harju was a kidney recipient, receiving the organ donation from her lifelong best friend, Tina Houle, who incredibly was a match.

The two shared their remarkable story with The Mining Journal for a 2011 series on The Ultimate Gift, organ donation.

In that story, Harju mentioned wanting to organize a run/walk the following year.

Those weren’t just words. With Houle by her side, Harju spearheaded the Run for Life in Marquette to create awareness of the importance of organ donation and to raise funds for people in need of a donation.

It was a success.

Amy Harju joined the angels Saturday at age 50. She was a special woman who will be profoundly missed by everyone who knew her.

In the 2011 story, Harju offered this explanation of why she and Houle were willing to share their story:

“Life is a gift. There are difficult chapters in everyone’s life. What’s there to be negative about? This was a gift shared between friends.”

Amy Harju was a gift to us all.


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