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Friday, June 14, 2013

Bloomfield resident celebrates 20th anniversary of heart transplant

The Farmington Daily Times | Hannah Grover
Larry Guffey walks with his horses Zee, at back, and Lady Bug, Tuesday, at his home in Bloomfield. Guffey received a heart transplant 20-years ago today. (Jon Austria/The Daily Times)

FARMINGTON — In June 1993 — after Larry Guffey had five heart attacks — he received a heart transplant.

Doctors told him they could guarantee “10 good years,” Guffey said.

On Thursday, the 66-year-old Bloomfield man celebrated the 20th anniversary of his heart transplant. Guffey said he feels like he has been blessed.

"The Lord provides for all that I need," Guffey said.

The milestone is both personally significant and an impressive medical feat. Only 36 percent of heart transplant recipients live
20 years or longer, according to statistics from New Mexico Donor Services.

"We only have a handful of people -- two handfuls of people -- who are able to have a 20 year anniversary," said Maria Sanders, community relations manager for New Mexico Donor Services.

Guffey had his first heart attack in 1979 when he was 31. At that time, he had bypass surgery.

"It's a wakeup call to change your lifestyle," Guffey said.
"You have the power to SAVE lives." 
To register as a donor in California: 
www.donateLIFEcalifornia.org | www.doneVIDAcalifornia.org 
Outside California: 
www.organdonor.gov | www.donatelife.net

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