Local woman to get lifesaving organ transplant

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by Brandon Mayer

They’re a match! Winchester resident Tina VanBreugel has found the gift of life in a live liver transplant scheduled for August 9.

Tina, a mother and grandmother who was the subject of a Times article on June 30, was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver two years ago. Tina beat the odds because at that time, she was given only 6-12 months to live.

Tina’s search for a living donor came to a happy end when someone known to her – only the second person to be tested after her daughter – turned out to be a match. She is full of gratitude for both her donor and the public’s support.

“Of course I want to thank her with everything I have because she is truly my hero,” Tina said, speaking about her donor in correspondence with the Times. The donor has asked for her identity to remain anonymous until after the surgery is complete.

Despite the good news, there are still struggles ahead for Tina. Receiving a transplant comes with many expenses, such as a six-week hotel stay in Toronto (where the surgery takes place) following the completion of the surgery.

Tina’s friend, Brenda Cook, has organized a Gofundme page intended to help with some of the extra costs such as accommodations, parking, and additional medical expenses. As of time of writing, the Gofundme page had raised $4,365 of a $10,000 goal.

In correspondence with the Times, Tina wished to express her gratitude to all those who had donated, stating that she is “beyond thrilled” to be receiving support, not only from friends and family, but also from people she does not even know.

Tina has found new hope and happiness since receiving the good news. “I feel so blessed,” she told the Times. “It’s a miracle that has come true, and I cherish every day to the fullest.”

Those wishing to contribute to Tina’s Gofundme campaign can find it online at www.gofundme.com/f/help-tina-with-medical-expenses-for-her-new-liver?qid=392aa2b35ba118493e9763c6853f27f9.

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