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Living Donor Liver Transplant

$14,850 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 131 people in 6 months
Created February 23, 2019
Monday, February 25th our family’s eternal optimist, Bernice Ramsey, will undergo a liver transplant at Cleveland Clinic. Thanks to the generosity of a living donor, Cody Corwin, Bernice will truly be given the gift of life. In order to offset the costs associated with the transplant surgeries, months of recovery for Bernice and Cody, setting up a secondary residence in Cleveland and missed work days for our donor, we are asking for donations to ensure we are able to financially cover this life changing event.

Bernice has Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), liver inflammation and damage caused by a buildup of fat in the liver. Though similar to the typical liver damage seen in people who drink heavily, NASH occurs in people who do not abuse alcohol. For some people, like Bernice, inflammation and cell damage slowly damage the liver over time until it doesn’t work as it should. This same disease has already taken the lives of her brother, Mark, and sister, Jane. Without this liver transplant, Bernice would face the same fate.

Despite knowledge of her condition and years of attending the liver clinic at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, they rejected her as a patient for the transplant list when she became deathly ill. Luckily we didn’t give up on our quest to save the best person we know. We were able to have her assessed at The Cleveland Clinic where they put her on the transplant list.

Unable to meet the stringent MELD score criteria to receive a cadaver liver, Bernice’s best hope for survival was to find a living donor. Unfortunately, no one in our immediate family was a match. As we expanded our search to friends and family, a very generous offer came from Bernice’s grand-daughter’s boyfriend,  Cody! We were initially reluctant to accept his offer due the magnitude of the surgery and length of recovery. Luckily for us, he called the clinic’s donor line and signed himself up. After all the testing and assessments they accepted him as a donor.

Bernice and Cody make the world a better place. She has been a giver her whole life and thankfully we have been blessed to find another selfless giver in Cody. He is truly giving the gift of life! Nothing we can do or say can begin to express our gratitude toward Cody. We will never be able to repay him for offering life to our Bernice. The least we can do is pool our resources to offer both financial security while recovering.
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It’s hard to believe it’s only been 2 months since Cody selflessly underwent the miracle surgery which saved my mom’s life! For my mom, there were some complications and a longer hospital stay than anticipated, but I am happy to report she is home and doing amazingly well! Her focus now will be to try and rebuild some of the muscle mass she lost due to the liver disease. I am happy to report her doctor told her that she has many more years to enjoy life! Cody is doing great too! He has a pretty large incision scar that is healing well, his doctor said his liver is regenerating itself, and he should be able to return to work at the end of May. We will never be able to repay him for his bravery, generosity, or selflessness. He risked his life to save hers and we will be forever grateful. He is a true LIFESAVING HERO!

A Giant THANK YOU to all of you as well! Your prayers, well wishes, sharing of this story, and generous donations have helped us reach just over 50% of our goal which is ensuring we can cover Cody’s lost wages. I encourage you to keep sharing this story. We know how lucky we are! Not only are we lucky enough to have found a living donor, but are also extremely fortunate to have excellent health care, as well as the additional financial resources, and amazing support system in place to ensure my mom had the opportunity to be considered for transplant. I encourage you all to write your State and Federal lawmakers to urge them to put protections in place for living donors, ensuring their wages are fully covered during the post surgery recovery period. I can’t help but wonder how many mothers have lost their lives because the donor they found couldn’t afford to be off work for 12 weeks. No one who is willing and able to actually save a life by volunteering to be a living donor should be forced to choose between their paycheck and actually saving the life of a loved one.

Again, thank you to all of you for sharing this story, praying for or family and generously donating to our fundraiser. We feel such gratitude and appreciation! Thank you!
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Thank you WDIV and Priya Mann for covering our touching story!
Cody was released from the hospital yesterday and is doing GREAT! He came to see my mom this morning and her face just lit up when he walked into the room. Thank you all for your continued prayers and support.
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My mom was finally able to thank her superhero in person yesterday. It was such a sweet reunion. They are both doing well. Cody said he is feeling much better today, he has had all drainage tubes removed and will probably be discharged tomorrow. My mom is also doing well, despite the bruising on her face and arms. She is very sore and is still on a feeding tube but recovering as expected. The liver is functioning g inside her! This has been an exhausting week but we are so thankful for all the prayers, well-wishes, generosity and sharing of this story. This amazing gift given so selflessly by Cody will leave us forever in his debt.
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Hello everyone,

Cody and my mom are recovering well. Of course, they have a long way to go, but they have both been moved out of the ICU. Cody is being encouraged to take short walks throughout the day and will hopefully be released from the hospital Monday. They removed the ventilator from my mom and she immediately called Cody and thanked him for being the hero who saved her life! It was a very touching moment. Cody’s liver is functioning in my mom and she already looks and feels better! We are so grateful for your prayers and generosity. Thank you again, for sharing our story with your networks. Words cannot adequately express our love and gratitude for Cody and his heroic and selfless deed! Please continue to share our story to highlight the importance of living organ donation.
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$14,850 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 131 people in 6 months
Created February 23, 2019
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