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Recipient Stories

Recipient Stories

Organ, eye and tissue donations can have a lasting impact on transplant recipients and their loved ones. Hear real-life stories from individuals who have received lifesaving and life-enhancing transplants, thanks to the generosity of donors and their families.

Margaret Gorrell

Baby Margaret desperately needed a transplant for her enlarged heart. After five months in the ICU, the call finally came that Margaret would receive a new heart.

In early 2017, Kristen Gorrell suffered cardiac arrest during the middle of the night. Her husband, Bryce, performed lifesaving CPR. Soon afterward, Bryce and Kristen’s previously healthy baby, Margaret, fell ill. Doctors could not determine what was wrong. Soon, Margaret was so sick that Kristen and Bryce admitted her to the hospital, where she received a chest X-ray revealing her enlarged heart. With a resting heart rate of 200 beats per minute, she desperately needed a transplant.

Real-life stories of organ and tissue donation (Midwest Transplant Network, Kansas and Missouri)

Joe Rethford

Thanks to donor tissue used for reconstruction, Joe was able to get back to normal life after falling from a ladder and suffering devastating compound fractures in both wrists.

Riding motorcycles and playing guitar are two of Joe’s favorite hobbies – hobbies he didn’t think he’d ever be able to enjoy again after falling from a ladder and suffering compound fractures in both wrists.

Real-life stories of organ and tissue donation (Midwest Transplant Network, Kansas and Missouri)

Gentleman Nguyen

After his liver transplant, Gentleman spends his time going to the gym and living a healthy life to take care of the gift he received, thanking his donor and donor family every day.

Shortly after Thanksgiving 2012, Gentleman received the call that a liver was waiting for him. “I have much to be thankful for and feel better now than I have in a long time,”  he said.

Read about donor families and the impact their loved ones made, or tell us about your own personal experience with organ donation.