(CBS NEWSPATH) – Terry Giang and Aaron Ly from Virginia got married 15 years ago, and they always thought they were a perfect match. “I’m so happy to have her,” Ly says. After Giang needed a lifesaving organ transplant, they are more validated than ever.
Giang found out she had stage 5 kidney failure more than a year ago. The 36-year-old thought she’d be on dialysis for the rest of her life. Until the day she got the call from her doctors. “I didn’t believe it. He didn’t believe it neither. They would tell us – you guys are a perfect match,” Giang said. And Ly was ready to donate his kidney to his wife. “Just knowing that he had the guts to do something so big and so brave. It’s like true love,” Giang said.
The transplant surgery was performed last month. “When it come to kidney transplant, that’s the scariest thing for me. But because so many episodes that she go through, it just make me become a stronger and stronger person,” Ly said.
While more people are signing up to become donors, the need for organs is still critical. More than 105,000 people are on the national transplant waiting list, according to organdonor.gov. Douglas Wilson is the executive vice president at LifeNet Health, which handles organ transplants in the Commonwealth of Virginia. “The wait for a kidney in the United States is generally over a five year period. So if someone is healthy and is a match, they can live a perfectly normal, productive life with one kidney. Living donation is a great thing because you can see immediately the results of the gift that you gave,” he says.
Talking about her husband, Giang said, “He gave me a second chance at life.” And with this new gift of life the couple is now hoping to start a family.
According to organdonor.gov, it’s estimated 17 people die every day waiting for an organ transplant.