On July 17, 2004, the call came!
Life has certainly turned around for Wayne Meyers. For the past 6-7 years, this 61 year old grandfather has waited and
waited and waited for that one phone call. It is impossible to count the number of times a U-turn had to be made because the
cell phone had been forgotten on the table, in another pair of pants or on the TV. Wayne didn't dare leave the house without
his cell phone connection to his transplant coordinator, Tammy.
**Finally, on July 17, 2004 at 2:50 AM the call came.** The Lord smiled on Wayne and decided it was his turn to get the
call. Unfortunately, Wayne didn't get that call. Another call from Tammy was placed several minutes later, again there was
no connection. Wayne was less than an hour from home and his AT&T phone coverage was not up to the challenge. At 3:00
Tammy called his home phone with the desperate hope that someone would answer. Wayne's wife was home. After 30 seconds of
pure shock she was able to dial and relay the words "Tammy..heart...your" to Wayne over his poor phone connection.
Wayne jumped in the car and headed home. He had 2 hours to get to the hospital and the clock was ticking.
On his way home he kept telling himself not to speed. He couldn't afford to wreck when they had a heart waiting just for
him! His own heart was doing enough racing for him and the car. He treated each red light as a stop sign and went through
when no one was coming the other way. He made it to within 2 miles of home when those pesky red flashing lights appeared in
his rear view mirror. Was this a cruel joke?? Was he going to miss his chance for a new life because he was going to get a
ticket? Not this time, when the officer heard where he was headed he quickly gave Wayne the go ahead and even stopped traffic
so the journey could continue. The good Lord was still smiling on Wayne. He was able to stop at home, drop off Champ the
dog, pick up his wife and make it to the hospital by 4:30, a whole half hour to spare.
From there things happen at lightning pace. By 5:00 he was on his way to the operating room. His extremely nervous family
was delegated to the Family Surgical Waiting Room. What a scary place that can be. So many other families there, going through
similar situations. Some would be going home overjoyed; and some would leave with a heartache so big they don't know how they
would survive. Even at this early hour each family tried to stake claim to their own little corner of the waiting room so
they could deal a little more privately with what ever emotions that would come their way.
The Meyers family was no different. They found a quiet little corner near the vending machines and the nurse's phone that
would quickly become the life line for every family there. Every time the phone rang everyone in the room would hold their
breath because they all knew someone was going to get some news; the question was always whether it would be good news or
The surgery was going to take at least 6 hours. The family tried to kill time by faking a nap, reading, walking the halls
and nervously joking around. Everyone was a little unsure as to whether or not joking was appropriate. Wayne was always such
a jokester, they became sure he would have approved. Time still passed slowly.
At 5 hours and 50 minutes, Dr. Shears came in and asked for the Meyers family. We all stopped breathing until he announced
the surgery was over and Wayne was doing remarkably well. Everyone started to laugh and cry at the same time. God had smiled
on Wayne yet another time.
Since July 17th the good Lord continues to smile on Wayne over and over again. Every time a nurse or doctor would give
the family news about his recovery the words remarkably and exceptional were always part of the update. While it was a very
tough two weeks in the hospital there wasn't a day that went by that there wasn't something to be thankful for. Some days
it was getting another IV disconnected, one day it was getting that first bubble bath and some days it became so much more
personal. One day both his brother and sister confessed that he was the person they admired most because he had gone through
all this with his sense of humor and love of life intact. It doesn't get much better than that. Its not often you can become
your sibling's hero.
Wayne is home recovering and getting better every day. He came home to a front yard festively decorated by caring friends
to welcome him home. There were signs, balloons and garland every where. It looked more elaborate than the yearly Christmas
decorations. His endearing sense of humor is beginning to return. And because of his loving out going personality there has
been a steady stream of visitors to help make his days go by quicker and just a little easier.
We are asking all who read this to say a prayer for Wayne. We also are asking for prayers for his donor and the donor's
family. We will never forget that it was their generosity during their hours of grief which resulted in our great joy. We
can only hope that the Lord gives them the strength to get through their own ordeal. The doctors and nurses have done the
best they could do for Wayne and we will always thank God for their talent, but now your prayers are the best medicine Wayne
can receive. Please pray for Wayne and the 23 year old that made this all possible.
We also hope that, if you can find it within your heart, that you send a donation to Wayne's transplant fund. Because
of the high cost of the surgery, the extended hospital stay and the constant high cost of all the drugs he will have to take
for the rest of his life, we must continue to raise funds. Any help you can offer will be greatly appreciated.
In order to help with Wayne's medical costs we have established a fund in his name with NTAF (National Transplant Assistance
Fund). The NTAF, a non-profit organization, will serve as trustee for the fund. All 501(c) 3 tax-deductible donations are
made directly to and disbursed by NTAF for heart transplant related expenses only. NTAF will match the first $1000.00 we
raise with a one time only grant. This means we will be most grateful for any help you can give, no donation is too small.
We hope this web site will let you get to know Wayne and his family a little better, and will give you the opportunity
to get some more information about the NTAF and other transplant information.
Check out our LINKS page for more transplant information.
PLEASE HELP BY MAKING YOUR TAX-DEDUCTIBLE CONTRIBUTION
TO WAYNE'S TRANSPLANT FUND THROUGH THE NTAF. Please be sure to include "FOR WAYNE MEYERS" in the MEMO line of your
check before sending it in to NTAF so they will know how to distribute the funds. (This part is important!)