MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Susan Chediak is a nurse manager at Broward Health, and her kids are living proof of the impact organ donation can have.
Gabriela Chediak is 18 years old and her brother Gilbert is 21. Both are success stories after getting liver transplants as babies.READ MORE: Business Owners In South Florida Say They're Struggling To Get Employees Back To Work
“I grew up basically knowing I have a liver that is not mine, and I also had an older broth here had a liver transplant also,” said Gabriela.
They were less than a year old when diagnosed with progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis (PFIC), a rare genetic disorder that causes liver failure.
Now, there are checkups and other things they have to do. For their mom, it’s routine.
“They have had a totally normal life. They took their medication every day for the rest of their life. They take their medication, liver checks. But other than that, they have gone through school. My son is 21 and working at a warehouse,” said Susan.
Gabriela is set to graduate high school and go to college. She appreciates life and all that she has and doesn’t take it for granted.READ MORE: ‘Pretty Big Pay Package’: Broward School Board Negotiates $743K Exit Deal For Embattled Supt. Robert Runcie
“Without this transplant, I wouldn’t be here right now. I, a bunch of my friends, even my brother, we all wouldn’t be here right now if somebody had not checked that box at the DMV,” said Gabriela.
Susan knows firsthand how important it is and has her personal message for everyone.
“If you have the opportunity to donate, please do so because you will be saving families. If it wasn’t for organ I would not have either one of my children with me,” added Susan.
National Donate Life month is all about getting the message out.
Organ, eye, and tissue donations literally save lives.MORE NEWS: Pembroke Pines PD: 15-Year-Old Bicyclist Killed After Being Dragged Under Minivan For 30 Feet
This Friday is blue and green national donate life month.