July 15 (UPI) -- Granger Smith's wife says their late son's organs helped save two people's lives.
Amber Smith discussed in an Instagram post Saturday their family's decision to donate son River's organs following his death at age three in June.
"I've always known I wanted to be a donor if anything were to happen to me," Amber wrote. "Never in a million years did I think I would be making that decision for my baby. When 3 different neuro specialists told us that River had 0% chance of brain recovery (yes 0, not 10 or 1%, 0) after shock and reality set in, I thought, how can we bury our sweet baby and not try to help others?"
"There are so many people waiting for an organ to save their lives ... We would have to search for viable recipients and it could take days," she said. "They tried to expedite the process so our family could be in peace, told us they would take him back to operate the next morning, but we wouldn't know what organs could be used until after."
Amber said she spent the night in bed with River as doctors took blood and ran other tests. Family and hospital staff gathered the next morning for her son's "walk of honor" before donation.
"Granger and I held each other and cried," Amber recalled. "We got the letter that our tiny, red-headed hero gave life to 2 adults. A 49 year old woman and a 53 year old man. I cried when we opened it. Cried out of sadness & cried out of love."
"I'm so proud to be River's mama and I'm so grateful to God that he gave him to us for those incredible 3 years. I pray these 2 recipients live healthy, joy filled, full throttle lives just like Riv. It was one of the hardest, yet easiest, decisions we've ever made," she shared.
River died June 6 of an accidental drowning at home. Smith, a country singer, and Amber helped raise more than $200,000 the same month for the hospital where River received medical attention before his death.
"Let this be a small token of the gratitude that we've got for you guys," Smith said while presenting the check.
Smith and Amber are also parents to 7-year-old daughter London and 5-year-old son Lincoln. Smith last released the album When the Good Guys Win in 2017, and resumed touring at the end of June following River's death.