“When his eyes closed here on earth, someone else’s eyes opened.”

There’s no mistaking the love and loss in Lemuel “Lem” Breidenstein’s voice when he talks about his late brother, Michael. How much the big time Giants and Mets fan meant to him. What a good heart he had, how he touched people’s lives. How even in death, he helped one more.

Michael, 55, died of cancer on November 8, 2008, weeks shy of his 56th birthday. Lem was by his side. His voice is soft as he shares the deeply personal moment, “I simply said, ‘Let go, let God ...Reach for the light and someone will be there to help you.’” 


 “When his eyes closed here on earth, someone else’s eyes opened.”


There’s no mistaking the love and loss in Lemuel “Lem” Breidenstein’s voice when he talks about his late brother, Michael. How much the big time Giants and Mets fan meant to him. What a good heart he had, how he touched people’s lives. How even in death, he helped one more.


Michael, 55, died of cancer on November 8, 2008, weeks shy of his 56th birthday. Lem was by his side. His voice is soft as he shares the deeply personal moment, “I simply said, ‘Let go, let God ...Reach for the light and someone will be there to help you.’” 


It was in the last days of his life that Michael chose to become an organ donor. It means much to his family that his eyes are helping someone else to see. “The family of Michael and the Honesdale Lion’s Club would like to acknowledge this gift of sight,” Lem said.


 The family has been invited to Macungie, PA to a ceremony in honor of his brother and others who’ve given the gift of life through organ and tissue donation. He’s to receive a “Gift of Life” donor medal in honor of his brother.


The family’s also been asked to add to the Quilt of Life. Each family is invited to bring a material square, representing their loved one, to add to the ever expanding quilt. His brother’s square, double sided, bears the unmistakable colors of his favorite NY teams.


“He loved sports, especially the Giants and the Mets,” Lem said. He not only enjoyed watching a good game, but equally loved to play.  “He loved to play ball and he was good at it,” Lem says. As an adult, Michael played on several local baseball teams.


He was also a hard worker. “If you needed something painted, he was really the person to call. He took great pride in working with his hands,” Lem said.


Lem says he thinks of his brother often. Like when he’s watching their Mets or out on a long walk. “I’ll ...look up and privately say something,” Lem says. “Brother, I think about you. You are no longer in pain. And I hope, when I reach for the light, you are the one that helps me up.”   


The family hopes one day to meet the recipient who received Michael’s eyes. “It would be nice, if we as a family, could know who it was and how they’re doing,” he said.