A woman from Indiana heard her daughter’s heartbeat inside the chest of an Illinois man, 68 years old. He had received the transplant in an operation.
Amber Morgan and Tom Johnson reconnected for the first time on Saturday, four years since Tom received a transplanted heart from Andreona Wilkins, at 20.
According to the Chicago Tribune, Indiana Donor Network organized the rare meeting in a Chicago hotel.
Morgan listened to Johnson through a stethoscope.
“It’s almost like I got to hug my daughter again,” the South Bend, Indiana, woman said.
“As a mother, you listen to your child’s heartbeat when you carry them, and I don’t think you ever ask to hear it again,” Morgan said. “It’s amazing.”
Johnson from Kankakee in Illinois stated that he wrote Morgan a 2019 letter one year after the Loyola University Medical Center transplant in suburban Chicago. He wanted to express his gratitude for the family’s decision to donate the heart.
Morgan wrote a second letter but didn’t get a reply. She said that she would be happy to meet Morgan after her heart problems.
Johnson was born with a weak and fragile heart. Before recommending a transplant, doctors tried a pacemaker as well as a defibrillator.
“It opened up a whole new world of possibilities,” Johnson said. “It’s just unbelievable. It’s incredible. I can even ride my bike and work out in the yard. My sons can’t believe how quick I can go.”
Sharon Johnson, Johnson’s wife, stated that Williams’ heart is very special.
“He takes very special care of her,” she said. “He never misses his heart medication. Never.”
This story originally appeared in the New York Times. November 20, 2022, 12:58 PM