Nurse finds hope in tissue transplant  |  June 1, 2011

“As a registered nurse, I have solicited and educated families about organ and tissue donation,” said Margie. “However, as a mom receiving this precious gift, it is truly beyond anything I can imagine.”

In 2010, Margie tore her ACL while playing with a child in an inflatable jumping house that she was sponsoring at a church event. Immediately after the injury she was unable to straighten her leg or bear weight on it. Following an MRI that confirmed the tear, Margie decided right away that she would pursue an allograft tissue transplant to repair her knee, if possible.

“I love to bike, play tennis, power walk and swim,” said Margie. “With the injury I was limited. I had a neighbor living with the same injury and I didn’t want to do the same thing.”

However, the gift of tissue donation was not something that Margie took lightly or for granted.

“I was educated in what it means to have donated organs or tissue available, and I trust the system,” said Margie, who works as a parish nurse.  “It’s also a faith journey. I want to live my life fully and this offered me fullness and I didn’t want to pass that up.”

Margie’s family was definitely impacted by the accident, surgery and slow road back to recovery. But Margie is confident that because of her gift of life from a tissue donor she will be able to have a richer life with her husband and their 10-year-old daughter and 7-year-old son. Since her tendon transplant surgery in August of 2010, Margie has experienced a profound recovery. She is back to the activities she enjoys including activities with their children and exercising.

“Life can be grossly unpredictable and dangerous and unfair. I received the tendon from a 19-year-old donor. In that generosity, I got to walk again. My faith enters in deeply in understanding the gravity of this. There is not a final chapter when God is part of the equation and he can bring about renewal and healing.”

Also, Margie is committed to keeping her donor and donor family in her thoughts moving forward.

“We pray for that family and realize that while our life normalizes, there will always be an empty seat at their holiday tables. There are a lot of people in my life that are aware of that, and I am not hesitant to share the story.”

Get our newsletter