Ellen Bowden of Rochester Hills, MI

I am deeply humbled by the gift I was given. I was in need of a new liver and was progressingly getting sicker and sicker until the call came that there was a donor liver for me and did I want it. I was overwrought with emotion as I said yes, I did want to accept the liver if possible. I had just been discharged from the hospital for a few hours and was to go back that same night. The surgery was long, 11 hours and I had two follow up surgeries to repair blood leaks. I was very weak, having lost 40 pounds over the past few years due to liver disease. But I found the strength to continue to fight, found encouragement from visits from other transplant recipients and my loving and supportive family. I feel a sense of responsibility to the donor family. It is important that they know the death of their loved one was not entirely in vain as a part of their loss lives on in me. For that I am humbled, grateful and found a new direction in life. To help individuals and their families who are facing orgran transplantation. I am excited for what the future might hold for me as each day is a gift that I treasure.

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