FREDERICK, MD - A state senator hopes to change the way people become organ donors.
Pat Hanberry heard a friend needed a kidney, and she knew right away how she could help out.
"I said, 'Well, you can have one of mine.' She just kind of looked at me, and she said, 'Really, don't you want to think about it,' and I said, 'Yeah, I just did,'" said Hanberry, who works as CEO of the Mental Health Association of Frederick County.
Hanberry now has one kidney, and the other is inside LaVerne Gill, a pastor and author.
Hanberry inspired Maryland Senator Ron Young to draft a bill in her name, after getting the idea from Bill Ruehl. The three are members of the Frederick Rotary Club.
Currently, those getting or renewing a driver's license in Maryland are asked if they want to opt-in to becoming an organ donor. Under the bill, the MVA would ask people if they want to opt out.
Only about 46 percent of people with a Maryland driver's license are organ donors.
"Pat did a very courageous thing, giving an organ as she's living, but many, many people pass away with good organs that could save lives, and I think most would be willing to give that up," said Young, (D) , Frederick and Washington Counties.
The idea received mixed opinions from people in Frederick County.
"I don't like the idea of having to opt out. I think the government needs to stay out of our lives as much as possible," says Conrad Weaver.
"There's a lot of people out there who care about other people, and they're not selfish. They're sensitive like that," says Justin Radinsky, who said he likes the idea.
"I think it's more confusing for people for asking do they not want to be an organ donor. I think it's going to take longer to think," says Erica Turner.
More than 2,000 people are waiting for an organ transplant in Maryland, according to the Living Legacy Foundation.
"You kind of don't need your organs anymore after you die," Hanberry said. "If you can help somebody else live, and it's almost like cloning yourself, my response is why not?"
That's a question lawmakers will have to answer when the 2013 session begins in January.
Frederick Delegates Patrick Hogan (R) and Galen Clagett (D) will sponsor the bill on the House side.