My friend Gwendolyn is a 32 year old loving wife & devoted friend who needs a heart transplant. She has always put her needs and wants secondary to others. She’s all but raised two of her younger siblings, while working & ill, surrogate parenting and providing for them for over a decade. She’s been the first to jump in, to start the rally, to give her last dollar to cancer research, toys for tots, or a neighbor in need. Now, it’s our turn to give back to this amazing & courageous young woman.
In 2002, at the age of 21, Gwendolyn was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma & treated with surgery & radiation therapy. Unfortunately, her “cure” would also cause more scarring on internal organs & future ailments.
In 2008, after a long history of stomach issues, kidney stones, extreme fatigue, and various bronchial infections, Gwendolyn came down with pneumonia and, after nearly two weeks of hospitalization & antibiotics, was diagnosed with heart failure and a prolapsed mitral valve due to the scarring of her heart from the previous radiation treatments. The doctors did an angiogram to ensure that there were no other issues and, unfortunately, Gwendolyn did not take to the anesthesia well; her heart stopped during the procedure and she needed to be revived. For a short time, they had things under control with diet, cardiology checkups, and medication & she even started showing signs of improvement through 2011-2012.
In May 2013 while at work, Gwendolyn suddenly feels ill and knows she has symptoms of heart failure and immediately gets to the ER at Good Samaritan Hospital. After a week of tests & second opinions, she is told she needs to be transported to Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn in order to give her specific care. Within 24 hours, a Left Ventricle Assist Device (LVAD) was implanted, along with an aortic & mytro valve replacement to deter her cardiac failure. The device caused an issue with the right side of her heart & a temporary Right Ventricle Assist Device (RVAD) was implanted for the duration of her stay. Gwendolyn had a total of 4 heart surgeries, was initially sedated for 8 days and hospitalized for 2 months.
Gwendolyn is now listed for a heart transplant and will hopefully get “the call” any moment. She is strong and proud and wouldn’t ask for help, but she is also kind and gracious and would bend over backwards if she thought it would make a difference to anyone. She is lucky enough to have her wonderful husband, Bob, who has made a huge impact on all of her caregivers, as you cannot help but see the overwhelming love the two of them have for each other. They were married just October 2012.
Now that you know a little bit about her and the wonderful person she is, we implore you to donate; to find that last dollar, or skip one coffee run, to pass this on to everyone you know, so we can help Gwendolyn & Bob offset the overwhelming medical expenses for her continued care. Between May and December 2013 those medical bills, prescription costs, premiums, and copays have accumulated to roughly $150,000.
If you can not donate online, please feel free to send a check, money order, or even a few dollars to the address listed below & reference Giving for Gwendolyn.
11s514 Rachael Court
Willowbrook, IL 60527
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at email@example.com and I'll do my best to help you out. You can also email directly from the webpage, https://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/giving-for-gwendolyn/98660, or if you have trouble finding the page, email me and I'll send you a direct link.
Most importantly please pass it on & ask others to share the message!
Give it up to Giving for Gwendolyn.
Thank you & God Bless!
Special Thanks to Rob Baker at Photogenic Chicago fb.com/photogenicchicago for the stunning "before" pictures he took of Bob & Gwen at their wedding in October 2012.