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Abigail VanNortwick

Team: Northwest

Age: 12

Hometown: Silverdale, Washington

Transplant: Heart, 1994

Event: Swimming, 100 free, 100 breast, 50 back, 50 breast, relay, volleyball

My Story: I was living in Japan when I was eight years old. I caught a virus that within weeks attacked and destroyed my heart. I was emergency airlifted to Hawaii where I almost died. Then I was flown to Children's Hospital in Denver, Colorado, and listed that night. I waited in ICU for only three days when a donor heart became available. I named my new heart "bomber", because one month later I was skiing! I'm now on a swim team active in 4-H and play the violin.

My Message to the World: I would like to thank my donor family for giving me a second chance at life. I would also like people to know that being a donor saves many lives. A transplant recipient can live a perfectly normal life and do anything anyone else can! In fact sometimes more because we no longer take our lives for granted. Showing everyone our skills at the Transplant Games proves it!

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Last modified: 11 May 2000