Posts Tagged ‘Hero’

Happy Memorial Day!

May 31, 2010

It is Memorial Day here in the United States! Funky Dad’s birthday, and the Bolder Boulder 10K Road Race takes place in Boulder, Colorado!

But please don’t forget the true meaning of Memorial Day – a day set aside to honor those who have died in military service.

Thank you so much for your sacrifice.

The Heart of a Ranger

August 10, 2009

Pause for a moment at the passing of Corporal Benjamin Kopp, an American soldier who died after being wounded in Afghanistan on July 18.

A member of the elite US Army Rangers, Kopp was evacuated first to Germany and then to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC. He was laid to rest with honor in Arlington National Cemetery on August 1st.

But that’s not the end of the story. Cpl. Kopp chose to be an organ donor. Had he passed away in Afghanistan, there would not have been an opportunity to recover his organs in time for them to be useful. Injured in the leg, Kopp lost so much blood that he went into cardiac arrest and then slipped into a coma. Despite doctors best efforts, he failed to regain consciousness and passed away in Washington DC.

And the woman who received his heart was actually a friend of a friend – she happened to be following the story on a website, and when Kopp’s desire to donate his organs was mentioned, she started the process to check into the possibility of an organ match. It was a million in one chance that just happened to hit.

And although Cpl. Kopp is gone, parts of him still live – including his heart.

“How can you have a better heart?” said a grateful Judy Meikle, 57, of Winnetka, Ill., who is recovering from the surgery. “I have the heart of a 21-year-old Army Ranger war hero beating in me.”


Mask and Cape not included!

June 15, 2009

Head Nurse has a great post on some of the technical details of organ donation. Read it. Contrary to popular belief, no one isĀ  coming to get you, the docs won’t just let you go without a fight, and you can donate more than just your organs.

Not everyone gets a chance to be a hero. Here’s your opportunity.

CHD Blog Carnival: Heroes

March 24, 2009

“Who am I? You sure you want to know? The story of my life is not for the faint of heart.” — Peter Parker, Spider-Man

Welcome to the first Congenital Heart Defect Blog Carnival! When the Carnival was announced, “The Gifts and Challenges of a Congenital Heart Defect” was chosen as the subject. As the entries began to arrive, it became apparent the the Challenges of a Congenital Heart Defect and the unexpected Gifts that occur because of them give all of our entries a certain… heroic quality about them. Average people overcoming the odds. The little guy who wins in the end. Follow along, and you’ll see what I mean. But don’t forget, if you enjoy a writer’s work, be sure to comment in the comment section under their post. The Author might not know of your appreciation if you post it over here! Of course, I’ll forward the comments on the essays hosted on Funky Heart.

Challenge: Something that by its nature or character serves as a call to battle, contest, or requires a special effort.

Sara Wallace of Palmetto Hearts offers a lyrical account of the battle her Cardiac Kid fought – and the battle every Heart Mom fights.

Jen Wright continues the theme as she writes not only of the heroism of her child, but as her community comes together in her darkest hour… and the greater good that may come of it.

Andrea Himmelberger and her family face challenge after challenge…and only later does she recognize the gifts that come from those who share a similar challenge.

Baby Hearts Press Author, Editor, and Heart Mom Anna Jaworski writes about her son overcoming HLHS to become a teenage robotics wiz. I think Alex has an ulterior motive – this Cardiac Kid plans to build himself a replacement heart!

Gift: A special ability or capacity; natural endowment; talent. Challenges we understand, but gifts? Who in their right mind could think living with a Heart Defect could be considered a gift?

In this September 2008 interview, Adult Congenital Heart Association President Amy VerstappenĀ  recounts the personal challenge that was issued to her after heart surgery… and the gifts that she has given (and received) through service to other CHD Survivors. I consider Amy to be one of my CHD gifts; along with being a talented organizer and administrator, she’s a personal friend.

Awesome Mom recognizes the challenge that her son faces but also found an unexpected gift, for which she is grateful. Awesome Mom truly is awesome – she blogs during Sesame Street!

Teri, Author of the Inspiring Hearts blog, offers a ten point list of how her heart defect has made her the woman she is.

Paul Cardall has learned that life is a gift, and he takes a moment to thank the people who are special to him. When you’re fighting for your life you want someone to cover your back, and Paul’s team isn’t going to let him down. Give this link time to load; the photographer captured the Cardall family perfectly!

Heroes, one and all. Special effort? Special ability? Could it be that gifts and challenges are really just two sides of the same coin? Is one that closely related to the other? Your humble host closes with another line from the movie Spider-Man, turning the Green Goblin’s malicious threat on its head as he reminds us that “We are who we choose to be!