Transplant Recipient - Organ
Joe received a gift of life from a liver donor. He was in grave condition when he was placed on the top of the liver donation list. My family and I were notified they have a liver for Joe within 4 hours of being placed on the list. On the morning of January 26, 2014, I watched my husband being transported to the operating room with a team of doctors, nurses, techs and his respiratory therapist. I was extremely anxious because Joe's chances of surviving the surgery was very low. It was about an hour into his surgery when one of his doctors came to speak with my family and I. He said Joe's health was failing and they may not be able to proceed because it would not be fair to attempt giving a dying man a liver when someone else could survive with it. They decided to give Joe and hour or so to become healthy enough to proceed. About an hour later, I received the call from the operating room that Joe had bounced back and they were proceeding with the transplant. His respiratory therapist, Olga, told the transplant team to prop him up because fluids were pouring into his lungs and suffocating him. The transplant team set him up, transplanted the donor liver and for the next 5 hours my family and I prayed for Joe to stay STRONG. When his doctor came out and told us the transplant was a success and was already working, all we could do was hug each other and cry. Joe survived!!! Without the expert hands of his doctors, the dedication of his nurses, techs and especially his respiratory therapist, he may not have survived. Through prayer, I thank the donor and his/her family for the gift of life and for the many blessings the good Lord has given us. Joe's recovery has been long and challenging. He was diagnosed with colon cancer in mid July. They removed the tumor and he is about to undergo chemo and radiation as a precaution to a very successful surgery. I am so proud of how brave and strong Joe was. He passed away in March of 2015 after battling colon cancer. I love you.