Stories of Hope

Mother and son; living kidney donor and recipient
Jan. 12, 2015
CHI Baylor St. Luke’s Hospital; Texas Children’s Hospital, Houston

There’s nothing a mother wouldn’t do for her child. For Romana Nasir, that meant literally giving a part of herself.

Date of transplant: 4/29/2015

Received: Kidney and pancreas

How Jessica’s life has changed: “After receiving my new organs, it’s been a whole new world,” Jessica said. “I have so much energy. I can run around with my kids. I finally got to visit my family in Florida after 10 years of not seeing them. I feel fantastic and I am so grateful for my donor and her family.”

Date of death: 12/24/2013

Donated: kidneys, liver, small intestines, descending thoractic aorta

About Caden: His grandmother, Lola, says: "My grandson was only 4 years old at the time that he had a brain aneurysm. He was a little man with a giant heart; he would give anyone anything he had. That was why we decided to let him be a organ donor, so that he would have given anyone what he had to be able to show how much he loved everyone."

Children of Heart Valve Recipient/LifeGift Organ Placement Specialist
Houston, Texas

Rodney Cruz has worked with LifeGift for five years. With a background in respiratory therapy, he is now an organ placement specialist. In that position, he comes face-to-face with a lot of grief – but also a lot of hope.

“All of the donor families I have had the honor of meeting always say, ‘Thank you,’ to me,” Rodney says. “And my response is always, ‘I should be the one thanking you for giving the gift of life.’”

Children of Living Donor
Weatherford, Texas

Kaci Lusk 
Altruistic Living Kidney Donor
June 25, 2013

Donor Family
Lubbock, Texas

Christopher “Toadbucket” Barnes
Organ and Tissue Donor
January 13, 2007

Conner Barnes and his little brother Christopher were inseparable. But in 2007, at age 7, Conner and his parents, Gail and Jody, faced tragedy; Christopher was in a car accident. After a week in the pediatric ICU, the 4-year-old passed away.

Liver Recipient
March 31, 2015
Texas Children’s Hospital
Houston, Texas
Justin Stout, 14, is a lot like other kids his age. He loves playing video games with friends, building forts and watching Aggie football games. He dreams of one day attending Texas A&M University and becoming an oncologist. But one thing sets him apart. Justin is battling acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or ALL – which led him into acute liver failure and a coma.

Twin Brother of Donor
Crowley, Texas

Cash Cooper
Organ and Tissue Donor
July 15, 2014

Heart Recipient
July 3, 2011
Texas Children’s Hospital
Houston, Texas

Kate Nalley was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy at only five weeks old; one of the ventricles in her heart was too enlarged to pump enough blood to her body. Just a few short weeks after diagnosis, the newborn girl was placed on the waiting list for a heart.

Brother of Donor
Houston, Texas

Fernanda "Fergy" Rodriguez 
Tissue Donor
September 29, 2011

Fernanda "Fergy" Rodriguez was something special. At only 15 months old, she was always smiling at the sky, talking to God and dancing to hymns. When a car accident took her life in September 2011, Fergy’s parents, Nancy and David, knew she’d simply gone home. They agreed to donate the tissues of their only child to help up to 80 people. 

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