Silas Huffman: 2 Years after Receiving New Heart

- On Tuesday, a little boy from Stockbridge celebrated a very special anniversary. It was exactly two years ago that Silas Huffman received a new heart. 

The FOX Medical Team's Beth Galvin followed the then 7-month-old baby's journey as his family prayed and waited on a heart. Tuesday night, Beth shared the a touching message on Facebook in honor of Silas' big day:

Two years ago tonight, Silas Huffman received a new heart. He was 7 months old and very sick.

Silas had been in Children's Healthcare of Atlanta for 101 days and had been placed on a Berlin heart pump to try to shore up his failing one. No one wanted to say it, but time was running out.

His parents, Chris and Amanda, allowed my photographer Eli and me to be there and to tell the story of that day. It was one of the most powerful experiences of my life.

I remember the surgical team wheeling Silas, so tiny in his bed, down to the OR. His parents walked just behind his bed, Amanda carrying a teddy bear of his.

Outside the OR area doors, Amanda and Chris kissed their baby, whispering to him, posing to take one last picture with Chris' phone before nurses took him away. By that time, he was sleeping.

Then, the long wait began. The jet carrying Silas' heart was delayed by a snow storm. The hours ticked by. I found myself praying the heart would make it in time to still be viable. The window is so small.

Just when it looked like the heart may not make it to Atlanta, it did. The relief was palpable.

Silas got his second chance that day. He was given another baby's heart. Even now, two years later, I struggle to capture in words what that gift meant.

That heart was a gift, no strings attached. A military family in Tennessee, suddenly told there was no hope for their baby, gave hope to Silas.

In their darkest hour, those parents turned toward the light. Two years later, I hope they have found some peace in their decision.

I fell in love with Silas months before his transplant, as he waited in the cardiac stepdown unit at Children's. Now, I can't wait to watch him grow up from afar.

 


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