Union University

Giving to Union

Giving to Union

Anatomical Bequests

Providence HallFor more than 20 years, Union has utilized bequests for anatomical education. The thoughtfulness behind these donations has been greatly appreciated by the students who have learned in anatomical labs with the aid of those donations and the instructors who have taught these young people so that they may aid others. This type of bequest touches the lives of so many over the course of the career of the doctors, dentists, pharmacists, therapists and other practitioners whose basis for medical understanding began with an appreciation and reverence for the human body.

Many of the individuals who decide to donate their bodies for educational purposes recognize the value of such a program. Retired Union University chemistry professor, Charles Baldwin was the first to bequeath his body to Union's Anatomical Bequest Program. "I never thought I'd be able to follow my calling after death," says Baldwin. "This is a way to teach even after the spirit has left the physical remains."

Union's steadfast purpose for having the Anatomical Bequest Program is to promote excellence in students' future medically-related careers, while honoring and treating with dignity those who have selflessly donated their remains. In fact, biology professor James Huggins, who leads the program, prays with students and thanks God for the donor before each class.

Like any end-of-life planning, joining the Anatomical Bequest Program is a major step that should not be entered into lightly. If you are interested in the program, contact our program facilitator for more information, have candid discussions with your loved ones and pray about the decision. We are grateful for everyone who wishes to benefit Union through an anatomical gift and endeavor to honor that wish every time. However, sometimes circumstances prevent us from accepting individuals into the program.

Melissa HopperContact Information

Melissa Hopper
Anatomical Bequest Program Facilitator

Office of Institutional Advancement
1050 Union University Drive
Jackson, TN 38305
731-661-5495 (Fax)

Those making time of death arrangements with the Anatomical Bequest Program on behalf of a deceased donor may contact Arrington Funeral Directors 24 hours a day at 731-668-1111. However, acceptance into the program must be established with the Program Facilitator prior to the body being received. This includes, but is not limited to, notarized paperwork being filed with the Program Facilitator. Arrington will not be able to accept donors into the program, unless approval has been previously established with Union University.


  1. Speak with the Anatomical Bequest Program Facilitator to receive basic information and determine if you are a good candidate for the program.
  2. Review information packet and have candid discussions with loved ones.
  3. Fully complete, sign, and return the appropriate forms:
    • If you are making the bequest for yourself, fill out:
      • Anatomical Gift by Living Donor
      • Document of Gift by Donor
    • If you are making the bequest for another:
      • Anatomical Gift by Third Party
      • Document of Gift by Third Party
  4. Keep a copy of the forms for your records, and mail the original forms to:
    Anatomical Bequest Program
    Attn: Melissa Hopper
    Office of Institutional Advancement
    1050 Union University Drive
    Jackson, TN 38305
  5. Be sure your next-of-kin and/or legal representative understand your wishes and the importance of notifying Arrington Funeral Directors immediately upon your death. We suggest keeping the program contact card in your wallet or another easily accessible place.
    Arrington Funeral Directors
    731-668-1111 (24-hour number)
  6. Keep the Union University Anatomical Bequest Program updated as important changes occur. These could include the following:
    • Change in address or other contact information
    • Decision to withdraw from the Anatomical Bequest Program
    • No longer being a good candidate for the program - due to disqualifiers

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