Greenville girl returns home after receiving a heart transplant - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Greenville girl returns home after receiving a heart transplant

Posted: Updated:

PITTSBURGH, Pa. - Months before she was even born, Faith Gibson had the odds stacked against her.

On a 20 week ultrasound, doctors discovered her heart had only three chambers.

"We picked what we wanted on her head stone, the outfit she was going to be buried in," said Jamie Gibson of Greenville, Pa.

Jamie and her husband, Nathan, spent 14 weeks planning a funeral before receiving the surprise of their lives. Faith's heart had grown, making her a candidate for open heart surgery, which she eventually had performed twice after she was born.

"She was doing great through the surgery and she was just starting to wake up and they pulled out the breathing tube out prematurely and it ruined her right ventricle," Gibson said.

It was a set back that forced the family to put Faith on a heart transplant list 20 years earlier than expected.

"The wait for the heart is just by far one of the most difficult things that I think anybody or any couple could endure," said Nathan.

After 101 days of watching Faith decline, a heart was delivered to the hospital, but not without its own adventure.

"The ambulance had gotten into a wreck and so the surgeon, the other ambulance didn't make it there in time, got in the cop car and that's what brought faith's heart over," Jamie said.

Within hours of Faith's transplant, her fingers and toes and cheeks had turned pink for the first time in nearly a year.

"I was actually shocked at how well she did and how smoothly things went because if I were to pick any patient who was going to have a harder time it would have been Faith because of all of the challenges she had going in," said Dr. Ashwin Lal with Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.

Challenges that no matter how big, pale in comparison to the lengths Jamie and Nathan will travel for their daughter and the love they have for her.

"All we wanted was her just to know love and that's our biggest goal is to be able to live a normal life and just enjoy every minute we have," Jamie said.

Faith was discharged Thursday afternoon after a six month stay at Children's, just in time for the family of four to celebrate their first holiday together at home.

Their oldest daughter, Laci, turns four on Monday.

  • More From wfmj.comMore>>

  • Police: Couple used dog to lure 2 Amish girls

    Police: Couple used dog to lure 2 Amish girls

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:04 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:04:19 GMT
    A woman accused along with her boyfriend of abducting and sexually abusing two young Amish sisters is due in court for a preliminary hearing.More >>
    A northern New York couple used a dog to lure two Amish sisters from their family farm stand with a plan to turn them into slaves, an investigator said Thursday.More >>
  • State won't sell naming rights for Ohio Turnpike

    State won't sell naming rights for Ohio Turnpike

    Thursday, August 21 2014 9:30 PM EDT2014-08-22 01:30:13 GMT
    Ohio will pursue opportunities to collect revenue through sponsorships along the state turnpike but will not sell naming rights for the 241-mile toll road.More >>
    Ohio will pursue opportunities to collect revenue through sponsorships along the state turnpike but will not sell naming rights for the 241-mile toll road.
    More >>
  • Ohio State president meets with band leaders

    Ohio State president meets with band leaders

    Thursday, August 21 2014 9:23 PM EDT2014-08-22 01:23:42 GMT
    Courtesy:  NBC NewsCourtesy: NBC News
    Student and staff leaders of the Ohio State marching band have met with the university's president to share concerns over the firing of a popular band directorMore >>
    Student and staff leaders of the Ohio State marching band have met with the university's president to share concerns over the firing of a popular band directorMore >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms