My Thoughts: New heart, new life impossible without organ donation

Commercial Appeal | John Daniel

John Daniel

On Sept. 15, I received a life-changing phone call from the heart transplant team at Baptist Memorial Hospital-Memphis. A heart was available from a local organ donor.

The next day, I had heart transplant surgery. Today I am home celebrating life, and on the road to recovery. I have high hopes for a long and healthy life.

More than 20 years ago, my heart was damaged by a viral infection, and I was told I'd need a transplant one day. In September 2014, my heart gave out. I couldn't walk without assistance. The next month, surgeons at Baptist Memorial Hospital-Memphis implanted a left ventricular assist device — a machine that pumped for my weakened heart. It acted as a bridge to life while I waited for a new heart.

We in the Memphis area are blessed with outstanding health care assets. I benefitted from the talents of surgeons and doctors at Baptist Memphis, and during my journey I've met many people whose lives have been impacted by the technology and physicians available locally. Continue reading