SALT LAKE CITY — It's a bittersweet relationship, the one between an organ donor's family and the donor's recipient.

For the hundreds of Utahns on the donor waiting list, getting what they need to survive usually means someone else has lost their life.

Rhonda Johnson knows all about loss. Her 11-year-old son, Levi, was hit and killed by a drunken driver while out walking with his father in 2014.

"Someone decided that ‪5 o'clock at night was a good time to drive home drunk and hit them, and they both died instantly," Johnson said.

Levi's cornea and heart valves were able to be donated. The decision to give the organs up as a donation was easy for Johnson, whose husband, Todd, was once on a kidney transplant list.

"When I said 'yes,' I just felt complete peace that a part of him got to continue to live on," Johnson said.

Levi's cornea now belongs to a girl named Maddy whom Johnson met last year.

"I am her donor mom. She is my daughter, and we're family," Johnson said. "That's just the way it is."

An open house was held Wednesday at the Celebration of Life Monument to bring attention to the need for organ donors and to honor those who have helped save lives through organ donation.

The monument on the southeast corner of Library Square, 500 S. 300 East, honors Levi and the nearly 7,000 people who donated their organs and their families. It is something Intermountain Donor Services hopes will bring awareness to the need for donations.

"There is always a need for organ donation," said Alex McDonald, a spokesman for Intermountain Donor Services. "Right now in Utah, there are about 750 people waiting for a life-saving transplant."

Each donor can potentially save eight lives, McDonald said.

For more information about organ donation, visit ‪