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Parker's story

Mum (Shayleah)
We are so lucky and so thankful. He’s living life exactly how all little boys should.

Our son Parker had been happy and healthy for the first 14 months of his life. He was always on the go even when the day came that I noticed his heavy breathing. After 3 days of his breathing getting worse and 2 trips to our local country hospital, Parker was flown via the royal flying doctors to Adelaide and admitted to the women’s and children’s hospital emergency department. He was misdiagnosed with pneumonia and sent to the ward where he deteriorated further before heading to PICU where at 4am the cardiologist knocked on the parent room door and placed a box of tissues on the chair. He said your son has a heart condition called dilated cardiomyopathy, he’s in severe end stage heart failure and we can’t say if he will pull through.

Devastated and shocked we watched as he made progress and started to recover until a rapid deterioration which saw him re admitted to PICU and contact made with Melbourne RCH for us to speak with the transplant team. Within 36 hours of that conversation we were in Melbourne and parker was placed on the transplant list waiting for a new heart.

Further deterioration saw Parker places on the Berlin heart to support his heart whilst we waited. After 160 days on the transplant list Parker received his most perfect gift, a beautiful new healthy beating heart.

When we first saw him in PICU after transplant he was so pink and felt so warm, something he hadn’t been for months. We spoke to the cardiologist after transplant and he told us Parker’s heart failure was so bad even with the support of the machine, that he was down to his last possible day on the list before they would have delisted him and put him on palliative care. His heart arrived just at the right time.

We are so lucky and so thankful. He’s living life exactly how all little boys should, surrounded by the things he loves (tractors and trucks).
Giving life is an extraordinary thing to do, donors are real life super hero’s!

Nicky Burton