MARTINSBURG - After months of exchanging letters and messages, Nicole Siva met Neferterius Akeli McPherson, one of the recipients of her daughter's organs, on Saturday.
Siva's daughter, Taitlyn Shea Hughes, was a 12-year-old, seventh-grade student at Hedgesville Middle School when she died from a brain hemorrhage caused by an arteriovenous malformation rupture on Nov. 6, 2011.
"It's really rare, only 1 percent of the population (has AVM), and typically they survive. Some of the people that have them where hers was located would have learning disabilities and seizures, but she had nothing," Siva said of Hughes' condition.
McPherson, 37, was a press secretary for U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk before having to go on medical leave. McPherson and her mother, Cindy, drove from Washington, D.C., to meet Hughes' family at Siva's house in Martinsburg.
"I really want to say thank you. How do you even find the words to say thank you? But I really wanted to say thank you for the gift of life. Thank you to this family for allowing their child to save my life. Because for me, it really was a life-saving liver transplant," McPherson said.