Media praise for The Nicholas Effect

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"As a 'collegiate writing-for-publication instructor' for 30 years, I can think of no book that surpasses The Nicholas Effect in opening the heart and changing attitudes for the common good throughout the world." --Bud Gardner, Editor, Chicken Soup for the Writer's Soul

"This luminous story of extraordinary people who made a world-changing decision is filled with grace and strength and, unexpectedly, joy. The Greens have shown us, as they say in baseball, the way to be." --Killian Jordan, Senior Editor, LIFE magazine

"When Nicholas Green was shot to death in Italy, the world reacted with horror. After his parents donated his organs to seven very sick Italians, their gift sent an electric charge through the human spirit. Now for the first time, Reg Green speaks about his son's death. This book is a story of grace, dignity and how one family turned senseless tragedy into a life-affirming gesture." --Robert Kiener, Reader's Digest

"'I knew I could never really be happy again' was how Reg Green described his feelings after the murder of his son. Instead, he found comfort by giving life to the boy's tissues and organs which were used for transplantation, and thereby giving survival to those who received these gifts. In his turn, seven-year-old Nicholas Green, who had aspired to heroism, was granted glory. It was a tragedy that ennobled the victim and almost everyone else involved, as is described in The Nicholas Effect: A Boy's Gift to the World." --Thomas E. Starzl, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Surgery, Director, Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute University of Pittsburgh

"The Nicholas Effect is a poignant story told by a loving father. Nicholas's family has shown that a little boy who died too young may still leave a lasting legacy to the world. Nicholas's story will inspire all who read it to become better human beings." --Peter D. Rosenstein, Executive Director, National Association for Gifted Children

"Nicholas's father documents the astounding and exhausting media attention their simple act received and the way it changed their lives, those of the seven Italians who received his organs, and thousands of others around the world. Nicholas's story puts a human face on organ donation, much as Ryan White's did for AIDS. Highly recommended." --Library Journal, May 1999

"The Nicholas Effect is a very apposite book for our times, when violent death and family values dominate the news. It is a great book for a book club to discuss, or for any of us to read. In a word, it is uplifting." --White House Weekly May 24, 1999

"In this book by the boy's father, the family shares their wonder and gratitude at the worldwide outpouring of emotions that followed--so-called, 'The Nicholas Effect.' We can't help but feel overwhelmed by both the tragedy and the ultimate grace of the story." --Family Life Magazine, July 1999

"The Nicholas Effect is the story of this boy, his family, and the Italian populace who came to embrace this unique testament to the human spirit, to selfless grace, the dignity of service, and to triumphant joy and inner peace. Highly recommended." --Midwest Book Review

"Insight into continuing saga of the life gift of transplants... Reg Green draws the reader into his family and we can further revel in the joy of giving life rather than just reexamining the tragedy that started The Nicolas Effect. The book flowed in a journalistic, yet moving style.

"I took the book on a cruise and was stopped my many people who did not know of the book, but recognized Nicolas Green on the cover. Reg Green convinced me that he is still in awe of the celebraties he encounters and can even laugh at himself when he suspects that he may be showing signs of too much self importance. If any of the readers have an opportunity to visit the Children's Bell in Bodega Bay, please don't pass up the opportunity. Rarely is there such a perfect sculpture anywhere in the world that captures the essence of this event. I have taken two friends at different times and they were as touched as I. I thank Reg for his book." --amazon.com, darlene@wed-guide from California, June 28, 1999

"My family doubts my sanity as I sat crying with your book telling them how wonderful it was. With your wonderful writing, I feel I know you and hope to be a better person because of it." --Pat Sortor, Administrative Director Georgia Transplant Foundation

"When 7-year-old Nicholas Green was murdered by highway robbers in Italy in 1994, his parents donated his organs, saving five lives and touching millions more with their generosity and grace. Reg Green says it was an easy decision, but it had a volcanic effect. Within days the number of people signing donor cards in Italy quadrupled. The Greens became national heroes.

"In this affecting memoir, Green, a journalist, shows what it's like to go from an ordinary family of four to international advocates for organ donation. Yet without a shred of self-pity, he never forgets that what triggered the family's change of status was an irreplaceable loss. Most amazing of all, this man, who still can't bear to part with his boy's hiking books, never shows anger toward Nicholas' killers." --People Magazine, May 24, 1999


A slain boy's legacy lives on in effort to increase organ donations --Judy Packer-Tursman, Post-Gazette Washington Bureau, May 16, 1999

"Hours after Reg and Maggie Green's 7-year-old son, Nicholas, died from a gunman's bullet to the head during a family trip to Italy, the grieving parents donated his organs and tissue to seven people because it was 'the right thing to do.'

"Four-and-a-half years later, a young woman who had been at death's door before getting the child's liver is the mother of a baby boy, named Nicholas. Reg Green, 70, recalls sitting at one point on a bus half-filled with several of Nicholas' organ recipients and their families: 'I looked around and said, "Did one little body do all this?"'

"The family from Bodega Bay, Calif., continues its effort to keep Nicholas' legacy alive. Their interest is not in turf battles among U.S. transplant centers or disputes over the best way to distribute donor organs to tens of thousands of people waiting for transplants.

"They want families to consider organ donation, and to discuss the subject openly so that they are prepared in the event of sudden death.

"'We try to tell a simple story: That you can save lives from making a simple decision that costs so little,' Green said. 'We knew we were not hurting Nicholas in any conceivable way, yet his body could be used.'

"The federal government recently announced that 5,788 donors provided organs last year, up a few hundred from 1997. Yet during that same year, the number of people on the waiting list for organs climbed from 56,716 to 64,423.

"'Like so many organ donor families, the Greens made a decision that transformed their brutal loss into a life-giving act,' Health and Human Services Secretary Donna Shalala said. 'Even though organ donation is now increasing, the need is still growing.'

"Last month the Greens joined 200 'transplant kids' and their families in the nation's capital to promote organ donation. Reg Green's book on the ordeal, The Nicholas Effect: A Boy's Gift to the World, (O'Reilly, $24.95) will be in bookstores Tuesday.

"'The Greens are unexpected heroes, joining those who reach out every day to save another human being,' said Sen. Mike DeWine, R-Ohio, who joined the Greens and other families at the 'transplant kids' rally. DeWine and his wife donated their daughter Becky's organs after she died in an auto accident in 1993.

"But the Green family's efforts have been transformed into more than a public awareness campaign:

"Inspired by Nicholas' story, the Italian Fulbright Commission has set up a scholarship program that will help bring a Sicilian doctor to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center by late summer to learn the latest advances in transplantation for a year, then return to Italy with that knowledge.

"To help gifted high school students study abroad, a luncheon will be held Wednesday in Washington to raise money for a scholarship fund in Nicholas' memory. Members of the mutual fund industry, which Reg Green has written about for years, have poured more than $150,000 into the program.

"To recognize accomplished third- to sixth-graders, the National Association for Gifted Children is awarding $500 U.S. savings bonds to one child from each state over the next three years. The Greens also gave Nicholas' college money to the group to help it advocate through state affiliates on behalf of gifted youngsters.

"And the list goes on, much to the astonishment of Reg Green. 'Because after all, this is only one very small tragedy and it ought by now to be forgotten,' he said in a telephone interview from his California home.

"Green said many tragic stories 'reach a crescendo' and then public interest ends. People remember occasionally 'and smile a little sadly,' he said, but the incidents tend to merge into a haze. So, he said, he wrote a book because he "wanted to etch this into people's minds so that they'd do something."

"Still, 'the writing about it and talking about it and going over it doesn't affect that daily sense of loss that both Maggie and I have,' he said.

"Green said his work in Nicholas' memory takes about half his time. 'We don't go hiking anymore. I don't listen to much music anymore....I get up earlier and go to bed later.'

"The family, including Eleanor, 9, and twins who turn 3 this month, has returned to Italy about a dozen times since Nicholas' death. Almost every day, the Greens get a letter from Italy from acquaintances and strangers.

"When tragedy strikes, Green said, a person's mind can be in turmoil, musing over 'all those little mundane things like who's going to pick the children up at school today.' He recalls thinking, 'How am I going to get through the rest of my life without Nicholas?'

"Green suggests thinking about organ donation by not focusing on the body. 'If you can think about people who could benefit,' he said, 'it puts a whole different slant on it.'"