A couple celebrated their 23rd anniversary in the most unique, touching, and ultimately life-saving way possible: the husband donated his kidney to his wife.
Monica and Cesar Calle of South Florida found that they were indeed a match when Cesar turned out to be an excellent candidate to save his wife’s life. The Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood, Florida conducted the rare kidney transplant on February 19. And in what made the event even more significant, this was the first time the hospital performed the procedure, ABC News reports.
Dr. Juan Arenas, chief of the Transplant Institute and surgical director of pediatric and adult surgical kidney transplants, led the operation, according to a statement from the Memorial Healthcare system.
Monica posted a video on the hospital’s Facebook page, saying,
You guys got us back into shape, you got us strong ready to tackle the next adventure of our lives.
Four days later, upon Monica’s discharge, the staff celebrated with cake, balloons and signs.
Dr. Tjasa Hranjec, one of the transplant surgeons, said, “We couldn’t have picked a better couple to be our first transplant and we look forward to many, many more in the future.”
Arenas added, “We are so glad we finally accomplished what we set out to do. It was a long road to get here, but we had an incredible match, an incredible choice of patient and donor-recipient and everything went as planned.”
The successful transplant is good news, not just for the hospital, but for the transplant program in general, as it will provide South Florida residents with “greater access to quality kidney and heart transplant care.”
Monica said of her husband, “This is an amazing, amazing gift. God put this man into my life for a reason. He really did. Twenty-three years ago into my life for a reason. He knew what he was doing, and he saved my life.”