Former Maryville resident, Chuck Loucks, could have been included in that statistic — if not for a heart donor last April.
“I’m very grateful to the donor family,” Loucks said, who now resides in St. Joseph.
Each organ donor can save up to eight lives.
Loucks became very sick suddenly in October 2010 and spent three days in the hospital.
“I know now that I was sick before I realized,” he said.
After the three days in the hospital, he returned to work, but he continued to get worse over the next several months. Finally, in January 2011, he sought help elsewhere.
“Within 36 hours, I was on life support and being emergency transferred to St. Luke’s Heart Institute,” he said.
Three weeks, and a barrage of tests later, it was determined he qualified for a heart transplant.
And that’s when Loucks began the waiting game.
Right now, 113,807 people are waiting for an organ donation.
He spent a few weeks at home recovering before returning to work with a pacemaker and continuous infusion therapy.
“I waited three and a half months,” Loucks said. “(I) was called at 6 am, Sunday morning, April 17th, (and told) they had a heart for me.”
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