Gratitude seems to have been the word of the day for a father battling with stage four colon cancer. However, he is not grateful for what doctors do for him, but for what a former high school classmate did to save his son’s life. Ashley and Ryan Wagner were high school sweethearts and got married almost four years ago, in June. However, the couple soon encountered some devastating times.
Several months after Ashely Wagner was told she is going to become a mother of one, her husband was diagnosed with colon cancer. The couple went to see a doctor, after Ryan attributed his distress to a stomach bug. Physicians say people diagnosed with stage four colon cancer only have five years left to live, at best.
“The reality of it was too much”, Ashley told Today reporters.
Ashley added Ryan and she had to have some hard conversations and talk about things they wouldn’t have dreamt of discussing until they were both old and gray. Then, disaster struck again. Soon after their son Miles was born, in August 2014, the mother witnessed the 2-month-old suffering a seizure right before her eyes.
Emergency responders took Miles to a nearby hospital and then transferred him to Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago, where Ashley and her husband learned their little one was suffering from a condition called hyperoxaluria, responsible for organ damage. Hence, young Miles needed a double transplant of liver and kidney.
Fortunately, after 11 months of dialysis, doctors found him a liver donor and put Miles under the knife. Half a year later, physicians told the Wagners Miles was strong enough to undergo the second procedure. However, patients on the waiting list could spend up to six years without receiving the transplant. In a desperate move, Ashely Wagner and her husband turned to Facebook and shared their story, in hopes of finding an eligible kidney donor for their son.
Surprisingly enough, Elizabeth Wolodkiewicz responded to their plea and offered to give Miles one of her kidney, after learning she was a blood match for the toddler. After weeks of testing, doctors gave the go ahead and implanted one of Elizabeth’s kidneys in Miles. At the moment, they are both recovering in the hospital.
Image Source: Facebook