Mom donates son's organs after twins drowned in sitter's pool

A mother in Tennessee is heartbroken after her twins were found unresponsive in the deep end of a babysitter’s swimming pool, saying she’s “not sure how to live with this pain.”

Amelia Wieand, the mother of twins Elijah and Elyssa Orejuela, told the Knoxville News Sentinel that her son donated his organs on Tuesday to help other children after passing away on Sunday.

“After much heartbreak, Elijah has gone to be with his sister Elyssa,” Weiand told the newspaper. “They were formed together in my womb and came into this world together. Both kids were extremely strong. She was his other half. They were soul mates and never apart. Even in death they were together.”

Weiand said her son donated his organs to save the lives of strangers he’ll never know.


“I’ll never understand this, and I’m not sure how to live with this pain,” she continued. “But to prevent another family from suffering this immeasurable pain, today Elijah became a superhero.”

The twins — who were just one month away from turning 2 — were found early Friday in the deep end of a babysitter’s pool at a home operating as a day care center on Fox Lonas Road in West Knox County, sheriff officials said.

The children were rushed to a nearby hospital, where Elyssa was pronounced dead Friday. Elijah was put on life support and was pronounced dead on Sunday, a hospital spokesman told the newspaper.

“I know right now they are in heaven being mischievous and giggling,” Wieand said, adding that her son never would’ve been complete living without his twin sister.

In a separate Facebook post, Wieand, a registered nurse, thanked the public for supporting her during the early stages of her grieving process.

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