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Stories of hope

Raven Martin: Liver recipient paying it forward

Transplant recipient, Raven, smiling

The first 30 years of my life were pretty smooth. I graduated college, married, started a career in research, had two children and just lived life! In July 2009, my family and I took a family vacation to Disneyland; it was there that I knew something wasn’t right.

I had no appetite and even though I wasn’t eating I constantly felt full. I had no energy-the heat and walking completely zapped me, but I pushed through for my boys. Unbeknownst to me, my liver journey had begun.

Six months later those symptoms led to my diagnosis of PSC (Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis) Over time, it progressed to liver failure, and in 2016 I was listed for a liver transplant. The symptoms only got worse. I suffered from extreme fatigue, itching and hepatic encephalopathy. August 3, 2022, I received a liver from an anonymous donor. I am so grateful for the family’s decision to gift me with a second chance.

Now it’s my turn to pay it forward and help others do the same. I decided to create my project Wearing My Truth, to bring awareness to living donation for kidney and liver transplant patients awaiting transplant.

Wearing My Truth is a line of T-shirts I created for liver and kidney transplant candidates looking for living donors as well as those who support living organ donation. They aim to serve as a beacon of hope for liver and kidney transplant candidates, and a reminder to society that organ donation saves lives.

Hand-drawn heart
Donor tribute, Liver, Living donor, Stories
decorative circle

Honoring those who gave

Read more donor tributes and learn about the National Donor Memorial.

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Share how you’re #LivingItForward. How has organ donation and transplant touched your life?

Stories of hope exist because of the selfless gift of organ donors. Read donor tributes. #LivingItForward

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