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Since November, my brother Chris (age 37) has been battling a relentless fight against congestive heart failure, brought on by a rare inflammatory disease that attacked his heart seven years ago.

Young man in ICU gives thumbs up and remaining hopeful for a heart transplant


  In spite of all the machines and surgeries, Chris still remains positive and hopeful.
For the past several weeks, he has been under care at the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit of Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA, and is now awaiting a heart transplant. Although several surgical interventions have been attempted, they have exhausted all options to try to keep his heart functioning properly enough for him to even get out of bed without assistance. As of now, he is listed as a Status 2, meaning that, without a new heart, he is unlikely to live beyond the next month.
While in ICU for months, a steam cap is the only way he can wash his hair while he awaits a heart transplant.
Even in ICU while awaiting a heart, you can still enjoy Spa days =)
While this bittersweet news comes with many emotions of hope and fear, it is compounded by the overwhelming amount of financial stress and strain on top of what we know they are already facing. Chris has not been able to work since last year, leaving his wife to support him and their 9-year-old daughter, Addison. She has had to juggle her duties nonstop between her family and her job so she can support them and also retain their health insurance.
"The world doesn't meet you halfway." Chris's constant reminder to keep fighting and stay strong for his family.
“The world doesn’t meet you halfway.”
To add to their hardship, living in West Virginia means they have to travel extensively for appointments, thus requiring costly lodging, time off work, and long hours traveling back and forth. On top of that, Addison has been living with relatives back home, which is three hours away from the hospital just so she can still attend school and attempt to maintain as much normalcy as possible during this time. The worst part of it all is due to her age she is not allowed in the ICU to see her dad, leaving her with extremely limited chances of seeing her father for the last few months.
Daddy/ Daughter Popcorn movie nights are the best.
Daddy/ Daughter Popcorn movie nights are the best.
Although the hospital provides terrific family housing opportunities for families like Chris’s, it still costs nearly as much as renting a small apartment, even after financial aid. The family has already experienced extreme emotional distress and now must deal with the challenge of covering their bills while planning for one of the most expensive and intense surgeries one can get.
While in ICU in Steeler's Country in Pittsburg, PA - Chris bleeds purple for his Baltimore Ravens home team
While in ICU right next to the Steeler’s Football Stadium, Chris has kept the rivalry and hospital staff laughing by proudly showing off his Raven’s gear!
Close family and friends are helping out as much as they can, but they still require much more assistance. My brother and his family have gone through a nightmare of a journey up until this point and while we know he will have a long road ahead, we are hopeful and praying Chris will have a happy ending to this tragic journey.
Family photos
Christmas Family Photos 2022
Therefore, we humbly request for any kind of assistance, no matter how small, to be offered to this young, suffering family so that Addison will never have to experience a life without a father and that we all can welcome Chris home again.
Click here to see all about Chris’ journey, his disease, and his progress!

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