Showing posts with label organ donor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label organ donor. Show all posts

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Navy Flight Surgeon James Mazzuchelli continued to save lives after he died

Their Son’s Heart Saved His Life. So He Rode 1,426 Miles to Meet Them.
Jan 24, 2020

What she did not yet know was the way those heavy words would ripple outward like a stone dropping into a still pond: allowing a man to return to work, a veteran to get his health back, and an ailing cyclist to get back on his bike. And how those little waves would slowly smooth out the edges of her own grief.

Lt. James Mazzuchelli in an undated photograph. Courtesy U.S. Navy
It took several drafts to get the letters right. To capture her boy who, just a few short months before, had been so full of life, energy, and love. To distill him into the two dimensionality of words on paper.

Three weeks earlier, the thread that held Christine Cheers’s world together had been ripped clean away, sending her whole life spinning like an off-balance top. On Wednesday, February 21, 2018, someone on the other end of the phone had said the words that bring any parent to their knees: “There’s been an accident.”

Her son, 32-year-old Navy flight surgeon James Mazzuchelli had been injured in a helicopter training mission at Camp Pendleton. If she wanted to see him while he was still alive, she needed to get on the next flight from Jacksonville, Florida, to San Diego—and she needed to pray.

James was still breathing when Christine and her husband, David, arrived at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, California, the next morning. But it soon became clear that his condition would not improve. Machines were keeping him alive, and the doctors told Christine that what she was seeing was likely his future—that her scuba-diving, world-traveling, over-achiever of a son was never going to wake up.
read it here

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

380 patients at Walter Reed who are on the national kidney transplant list

‘I don’t want to die’: 380 Walter Reed patients are looking for kidney donors

Military Times
By: Natalie Gross
February 26, 2019
Touched by stories like Dadzie’s, Desgoutte-Brown is trying to spread the word about her beloved patients, in hopes that others in the military community would consider coming forward as potential donors.
BETHESDA, Md. — “I don’t want to die.”
Navy wife Phyllis Obeng Dadzie, 25, went into kidney failure after giving birth to her son, Prince Charles, last August. (Charles Agyeilarbi)
Phyllis Obeng Dadzie said the words quietly, but with a slight chuckle, as though it was obvious. She was sitting with her husband, Navy Chief Petty Officer Charles Agyeilarbi, in a small room at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, shivering under a pink winter coat that covered her small frame.

Seven months ago, Dadzie, a native of Ghana, was a healthy 25-year-old, pregnant with the couple’s second child. But in August, complications during the third trimester and the birth of their son, Prince Charles, sent Dadzie into stage 5 kidney disease and, ultimately, to Walter Reed, where she now gets dialysis three times a week.

She’s fully aware of what could happen if she doesn’t get a new kidney soon, but she’s not ready to give up — not with a 2-year-old and a baby at home who need their mom.

“I just want to get a new kidney and live (for) my kids again,” she said. “That’s all that I pray for every day.”

Dadzie is one of about 380 patients at Walter Reed who are on the national kidney transplant list — from troops and military dependents in their young twenties to military retirees who’ve dedicated their lives to service.
read more here

Monday, February 11, 2019

Kansas City Police Officer's organs being donated after suicide

KCPD officer's family to donate organs after self-inflicted gunshot wound

By: 41 Action News Staff
Feb 10, 2019

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department officer remains in critical condition and on life support after a suffering a self-inflicted gunshot wound Friday night.

The officer's family has decided to donate his organs and hospital staff are awaiting organ donor recipients, according to the KCPD.

Officers responded were searching for a missing and endangered person Friday night. In this case, "a dedicated officer who has served our department for approximately 10 years ... was missing and feared to be suicidal," KCPD in a statement.

Liberty police, who were assisting in the search for the officer's vehicle, located it in the Pleasant Valley Baptist Church parking lot about 9 p.m.

Responding police officers found the officer suffering from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The unidentified officer was transported to an area hospital in critical condition.
read more here

He took a job he knew could kill him one day. He wanted to serve his community and save lives. He was an organ donor, so, yet again, he wanted to save lives. So why did the lives of others mean so much to him, but his own did not? Because he never got the message that PTSD is not anything to be ashamed of and those he served with would have tried to save him too!

Sunday, October 28, 2018

General helping Florida recover had donated kidney in his spare time?

How a 2-star Army general took charge of a broken city

Associated Press
By: Tamara Lush
October 28, 2018
"There was a gentleman who needed a kidney," he says casually.

That's right. In the last four months, McQueen has retired from the military, started a new job, helped coordinate one of the largest hurricane responses since Katrina, and donated a kidney. To a stranger.
PANAMA CITY, Fla. — Mark McQueen’s sand-colored combat boots have walked the ground during many disasters.



Florida's Panama City.
Then-Maj. Gen. Mark McQueen, commanding general, 108th Training Command (Initial Entry Training), takes a moment to praise the soldiers of the Special Troops Battalion, 304th Sustainment Brigade, for their 12 months of serving as CRC Cycle 4 at the Conus Replacement Center on Jan. 13, 2017, after their transfer of authority ceremony at Fort Bliss, Texas. (DVIDS)
The two-star general had no sooner retired from the Army and started his job as city manager for this Gulf Coast community when it was slammed by a category 4 hurricane. Hurricane Michael became the most devastating hurricane to hit Florida in decades. Almost all of Panama City's water, sewer, electric and cell services were wiped out.

Despite McQueen having no municipal experience and having been on the job only two weeks, city leaders say he's exactly the man they need for the long recovery ahead.

"I believe the Lord sent him," said Panama City Commissioner Billy Rader. "God knew this was going to happen before we did."
read more here

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Mother hears son's donated heart beat in Navy veteran's chest

Mother hears son's donated heart beat in Navy veteran's chest
Tuesday, February 13th 2018

SALEM, VA (WSLS/CNN) – A mother who lost her son two years ago is now talking about her experience hearing his heart beat in another man’s chest and encouraging other families to consider organ donation.
Melinda Dillon remembers her son, 21-year-old Lucas, as full of life and energy. She says he had many friends, but most didn’t know about Lucas’ decade-long struggle with mental illness until he took his own life.

"His blood type and mine both were B-positive and part of his notation to us when he committed suicide was to stay positive,” Dillon said. "It's been hard. It's hard to stay positive."

Dillon got her son’s last message tattooed on her wrist along with his heartbeat, a rhythm she was able to hear in another man’s chest after Lucas’ heart was donated.

"If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't even be talking to you right now,” said Dave, a 56-year-old Navy veteran, who was suffering from congestive heart failure.

Lucas’ heart now beats in Dave’s chest, something for which the 56-year-old says he’s thankful for every day.

"I was gone. I was dead gone, you know. I wasn't supposed to be here. Before Lucas, I wasn't supposed to be here,” Dave said.

Dillon reached out to Dave, and they met in person, where the mother was able to hear Lucas’ donated heart, beating in Dave’s chest.
read more here

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Veterans Run Into Problems with VA Transplant Coverage

As veterans die while waiting for organ transplants, Texans lead fight to fix VA policy
Dallas Morning News
Camille Caldera
July 6, 2017
The Nelsons decided to pay for the surgery with Medicare and assistance from the hospital, which donated some services. Later, the VA apologized and agreed to cover the deductibles from the operation.
Tamara, left, Charles, and Coty Nelson pose for a photograph at their Leander, Texas home Sunday, July 2, 2017.
(Ryan Michalesko/Staff Photographer)
WASHINGTON — When Charles Nelson — a disabled Army veteran from Leander — learned he would need a kidney transplant, his son volunteered.

Coty Nelson, 28, was a perfect match. And the Nelsons qualified for a program called Veterans Choice that let them receive care at a local facility instead of traveling out of state to a Veterans Affairs transplant center.

But Coty isn't a veteran — so that means they couldn't get coverage under the program. Other veterans seeking transplants from civilians also have been affected, and Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, has introduced a bill in Congress to allow coverage for civilian-to-veteran transplants.
read more here

Monday, February 20, 2017

Soldier Saved Seven Lives After Motorcycle Crash Claimed His

Soldier gives ultimate gift to seven strangers
Claremore Progress
Diana Dickinson
February 19, 2017
While family members were praying to God to save their loved one after a tragic motorcycle crash left him brain dead, other individuals elsewhere were praying to God for another day.

Twenty-one-year-old Oklahoma Army Reserve National Guardsman SPC Teddy L. Keys Jr., of Oologah, was a soldier who saved or improved the lives of seven people when doctors could not save him after a crash on April 27, 2015.

Because he became brain dead prior to his death and had maintained great physical health, his bones, tissues and other organs were all eligible for reuse and were harvested.
read more here

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Teenager's Life Cut Short By Accident, Soldier's Life Extended By Love

Teen who died following ladder fall donates kidney to veteran
by Suzanne Phan
August 26th 2016

SILVERDALE, Wash. (KOMO) - A Kitsap family is preparing to bury their beloved teenage daughter on Saturday, but they find hope and promise that a part of her lives on.

Sixteen-year-old Emily Ramm was a bold, daring, and outspoken teen with big dreams and a lot of ambition, according to her family. Her life was cut short after she fell from a ladder at a construction site at Silverdale Elementary School on Aug. 13.

Loved ones say she was climbing to find higher ground and a better place to watch the meteor shower that night with friends.

KOMO News has heard from a military veteran who received Emily's kidney right after she passed.

"There's no words to describe how grateful I am. For the family, the loss is huge. I can't say thank you enough,” said Daniel Mendoza from his home.
read more here

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

VA Not Paying for Transplant Donated by Non-Veteran?

VA denies veteran's perfect kidney match
11 Alive News
Andy Pierrotti

Jamie McBride is program manager for the VA transplant system in San Antonio, Texas. After five years working at the VA, he’s blowing the whistle about a broken system.
Photo: Pierrotti, Andy
It doesn’t take long for Tamara Nelson to get emotional watching home video of the day her husband, Charles, received a life-saving kidney transplant this past June.

Their son, Coty, agreed to donate to save his father’s life. “Watching my son is what makes me cry the most,” said Nelson in July.

It’s a surgery that almost didn’t happen. Nelson is an Army veteran. He went through basic training in Fort Benning, Georgia and now lives outside Austin, Texas.

While in the service, Nelson got sick, which infected his kidneys. “He was so sick I didn’t think he was going to make it to transplant,” said Nelson.

This past June, Charles says the VA approved the transplant. So, he and his son prepared for surgery. Two days before the operation, they got unexpected news.

The VA told them it could not pay for the transplant because their son is not a veteran himself.

“That’s just idiotic. Now you’re making it harder on me, limiting the people I can use. It was just unbelievable is what it was,” said veteran.
read more here

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Veteran "Webbie" Needs Lung Transplant, VA Said "No" Medicaid Said "Yes"

Family of veteran struggles to get him transplant
Veteran awarded with purple heart in desperate need of lung transplant

Rochester First
By Solina Lewi
s Published 04/27 2016

"I would have expected a lot more for a soldier who was injured numerous times, I mean he was blown-up, awarded a purple heart and still would have went back," said Rachel.
Jonathan Webster, also known as "Webbie" by his military buddies, has been in a a medically-induced coma after a rare reaction to chemotherapy caused both of his lungs to collapse.

"Just so happens he got the raw end of the deal, he got cancer-free but there were repercussions from that," said his sister, Rachel Hafner.
read more here

Friday, March 25, 2016

Marine To Donate Kidney to National Guardsman "Brother"

He's my brother: Marine donates kidney to Nat'l Guardsman
Kaitlyn Ross
March 25, 2016

National Guardsman Dustin Brown stands with his wife and young son holding a sign that demonstrates his plight - he needs a kidney.
ATLANTA - In less than 24 hours, a local patriot will undergo life-saving surgery.

Time was rapidly running out for a National Guardsman to receive a kidney transplant before his military contract expired.

Dustin Brown was in Stage 5 kidney failure and about to lose his insurance when another service member stepped up to help.

"We're all on the same team," Marine Corps Veteran Temple Jeffords said. "He's my brother just as much as any other person out there wearing the uniform."

Temple didn't hesitate when he saw Brown was in need.

"One of the things the Marine Corps teaches you is you're all brothers and sisters," Temple said. "That you're all part of the same family."

Dustin was about to deploy as a medic last fall when he found out his kidneys were failing.

He couldn't complete his mission to help people.
read more here

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Quadruple Amputee Due For Double Army Transplant

Retired Marine Awaits Double Arm Transplant
The Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, Va.
by Kristin Davis
Mar 15, 2016
For more than two months after the blast, Peck lay in a medically induced coma at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington. He'd endured more than two dozen surgeries; three times, his heart had stopped. An infection had nearly killed him.
In the evenings, in the echoes of the expansive home built and equipped for him, retired Marine Sgt. John Peck imagines a new life.

He wills the phone to ring. Perhaps this is it, he thinks when it finally does. The call from the Boston hospital that will set it all into motion.

Peck was clearing the way for his fellow Marines while on patrol in Afghanistan in May 2010 when he stepped on an improvised explosive device. The blast claimed both of his legs and part of his right arm. Later, as he fought a virulent infection, doctors took his left arm to spare his life.

Peck, a hulking, 6-foot-tall, 200-pound Marine, had become a quadruple amputee at age 24.

It was like somebody hit the pause button on his life. Now he waits for a double arm transplant from Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital in the hope that it will start again.

From the sun deck of his home at the Estates of Chancellorsville where he has learned to live in relative independence, he lists in order all he intends to accomplish when that day finally comes.

They are big dreams, he concedes, with an unlikely chance of total success.

He shrugs.

"I've had worse odds." read more here

Monday, March 7, 2016

Afghanistan Veteran Donated Kidney to Save Mom!

ABC 7 News
Darsha Phillips
March 5, 2016

LOMA LINDA, Calif. (KABC) -- When a local mom needed a kidney transplant, her Army veteran son did not hesitate to donate and save her life.

There are over 100,000 patients every year waiting for kidney transplants, and less than 20 percent of them will actually get a donor.

Living with kidney disease for more than 8 years, Lucia Zubia was afraid dying while waiting for a donor would be her fate.

"It's sad when you see your friends that you make at dialysis pass away, you know?" she said.

Lucia didn't have to wait very long. Her son, Emanuel, who had already served in Afghanistan, didn't hesitate to do something heroic again.

"For my mom, I'd do anything. I'd die for her," he said.
read more here

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Iraq Veteran Saved Life With Dedication Above and Beyond

Iraq War veteran loses 25 pounds to be liver donor for ailing coworker
By ABC Radio
February 26, 2016

(NEW YORK) — When Brian Burkett found out he needed a liver transplant, he thought it might take some time to find a donor. But after sending out an email to his coworkers, he found he received a response almost immediately from Mike Snyder.

“He called me within five minutes,” Burkett recalled. “You’re just like ‘What? Thank you!'”

Burkett had been diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver years earlier and suffered from chronic fatigue before the operation.

“It was awful,” Burkett told ABC News. “Sometimes you’re so tired you can’t sleep. I couldn’t even do simple activities.”

He said when he learned his coworker needed help, he had no doubts about signing up to be a living donor, meaning a portion of his liver would be used to replace Burkett’s liver.
read more here

Sunday, February 21, 2016

First U.S. Penis Transplant To Be Wounded Soldier

Wounded U.S. soldier soon to receive first U.S. penis transplant 
February 18, 2016
"When you meet these guys and you realize what they've given for the country, it makes a lot of sense," Dr. Richard Redett, a plastic surgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital who will help perform the operation, told Reuters.
A U.S. soldier wounded in an explosion will be the first person in the United States to receive a penis transplant, doctors at Johns Hopkins Hospital said, which could open the way for about 60 other servicemen with genital injuries to have this surgery.
Dr. Richard Redett in an undated photo.
Surgeons hope a donated organ from a recently deceased man will provide full function including urination, sensation and sex. The surgery requires joining nerves and blood vessels under a microscope.
read more here

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Wife of Marine Gives Part of Herself to Save Life

A stranger donates part of her liver, giving the gift of life to infant
News and Observer
Anne Blythe
December 24, 2015

Baby’s transplant helps bring two strong mothers together

Baby Elijah is now doing well, doctors say

Mothers say this Christmas is one they’ll cherish
Elijah Tsawo, at Duke University Hospital, with liver donor Sarah Ames.
Ames was a stranger who donated part of her liver to save Elijah's life.
She and Elijah's family have become close since the surgery earlier this year.
Photo courtesy of Nicole Fisher
DURHAM Sarah Ames lives by the philosophy that if you have the ability to help someone, you have the responsibility to try.

So this spring, when she was moved by a story about a mother’s plea for a liver donor for an infant son, Ames had no qualms about quickly taking a survey to see if she might be a match.

She received a callback the next day.

Two days later she was at Duke University Medical Center for more testing.

And two weeks later she was on an operating table at Duke Children’s Hospital, undergoing her first major surgery so she could give 25 percent of her liver to a stranger.

It was a gift of life for Elijah Tsawo, a 17-month-old boy who brought together two mothers who say the child’s misfortune led to their good fortune of meeting each other for a friendship they hope will last a lifetime.

“I tell her, she tells me, there are no words any more for what this means,” a grateful Gwendolyn Tsawo said earlier this month at a monthly checkup for Elijah.
‘Truly a hero’
Sarah Ames had worked as an acute care speech pathologist. She was familiar with the risks and rewards that modern medicine offers. She also describes herself as a Christian, driven by a strong faith. Her husband Jordan, a Marine, has similar beliefs and values.

The two have adopted six children – three boys and three girls who range in age from 15 to 6 – after finding out Sarah could not give birth to children.
read more here

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Fort Hood Final Act of Selfless Life Captured As Memorial

UPDATE on this from CBS Pittsburgh

There is a video of Matthew Whalen's body being escorted to the operating room. His organs, on this earth for 35 years, were being saved to help others live. This is something rare, all too rare, but then again, Whalen and his wife served in the military. They know what rare selflessness is. The last ride for Whalen was captured on video as staff and veterans lined the hall in silent memorial to a life gone far too soon.
Dying soldier's final act of service captured on video
Leada Gore
December 23, 2015
Matthew Whalen and Hannah Whalen (Contributed photo/Whalen family/GoFundMe)
Staff Sgt. Matthew James Whalen's last act on Earth was a fitting one, according to those who knew the 35-year old Army soldier.

Whalen, a former member of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division at Fort Hood, was diagnosed Saturday with a brain hemorrhage. He did not recover and his family made the decision to remove him from life support. In accordance with his wishes, his organs were donated.

They ended up helping two veterans who were awaiting transplants.
read more here

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Motorcycle Ride Honor Fallen Army Ranger Life Saver After Death

Motorcycle Ride Honors Army Ranger Killed In Afghanistan
CBS Minnesota
Jennifer Mayerle
July 24, 2015

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – On Saturday morning, hundreds will ride motorcycles in honor of an Army Ranger who died after being shot in Afghanistan six years ago. Fire sparked by lightning almost halted Friday night’s fundraising part of the Memorial Ride.

Twenty-one-year-old Ben Kopp died after being shot in Afghanistan in 2009. The Army Ranger saved the lives of six of his fellow Rangers, and in death, donated tissue and organs, including his heart, to 75 people.

It’s why Kopp’s mother, Jill Stephenson, and others press on, despite a set-back.

Silent auction items line the room at Bogart’s Place in Apple Valley. The items were saved from her Rosemount home early this morning and some still hold the lingering smell of smoke.

“Lightning struck outside my town home and hit a gas main and it started the box on fire,” Stephenson explained. “You know it’s not my first rodeo with something like this, unfortunately.”

She said a neighbor pounded on the door, saving her and her guests’ lives.

“I don’t think my heart’s ever beat so fast in my life,” Stephenson said. “I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.”
read more here

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Legally Blind Veteran's Organs Taken, Including Eyes

Lawsuit claims VA hospital harvested organs from non-donor 
Posted: May 18, 2015

MURFREESBORO, TN (WSMV) - A widow in Murfreesboro told Channel 4 her husband's organs were donated, but he was not a donor.
Medical records show that when Kevrek Frierson asked if he wanted to be an organ donor, he said no. He was legally blind, yet records show his eyes and several other organs were donated.
Left to right: Wanda, Kevrek and Myia Frierson

Wanda Frierson said she honored her husband Kevrek Frierson's wishes in life. She was distraught they aren't being honored in death.

"This wasn't right," she said.

Kevrek Frierson had diabetes and several other illnesses when he went to the Veterans Administration hospital in Murfreesboro. He fell gravely ill in June 2014.

After multiple trips to the hospital, he died.

"I just felt like something was not right and I just remember I said, 'Dad, I love you,'" said Myia Frierson, the couple's daughter. "And he said, 'Myia, I love you, too.' And that was the last thing I said to him."

Adding to their pain, the family said Tennessee Donor Services immediately rushed to collect Kevrek Frierson's organs. But they said he wasn't an organ donor.

"I told them it was in his medical records that he is not a donor," Wanda Frierson said. "He never was one."
read more here

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Iraq Veteran Marine Saved By New York Firefighter

EXCLUSIVE: FDNY firefighter donating bone marrow to save Iraq War veteran
Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Michael McCauley had only been a firefighter for a few months when he saved a life — and he didn’t even have to run into a burning building to do it.

The 26-year-old Staten Island resident was told in 2013 that he was a match for a leukemia patient in desperate need of a bone-marrow transplant.

On Wednesday, he will finally meet the mystery recipient — Aaron Faulkner, a 33-year-old Iraq War veteran and father of two from Pittsburgh, at a special reception at FDNY headquarters in Brooklyn.

“I went a long time without hearing anything,” said McCauley, who works out of Engine 242 in Bay Ridge.

“I wasn’t sure whether or not it helped.”

Faulkner, a former Marine now studying to be a pastor, was a student at Geneva College in Pennsylvania when he started to feel pains and exhaustion.

He thought the blood test he took in March 2013 would reveal he had an annoying case of mononucleosis — not acute myeloid leukemia.
read more here