A Beautiful Rose- Bella Rose Zuccato
Our granddaughter, Bella Rose, is indeed a beautiful rose who continues to bloom thanks to a liver donation from her mom Jennifer Ruzek. Bella’s trials began shortly after her birth in 2006 as she had serious allergies and also needed multiple surgeries for intestinal obstructions.
Soon after the last of the surgeries her liver began to fail rapidly. Her mom didn’t waste a moment and a transplant was performed on mom’s birthday, November 30th, 2006 at DuPont Hospital for Children near their home. It was Jennifer’s birthday gift to her precious infant daughter.
Both Bella and Jennifer recovered wonderfully well. They, along with big sister Abbey participate in many transplant awareness events as shown in the gallery below. They have been at the LI TRIO Rose Garden Ceremony honoring organ donor families several times where mom was presented with the New York State Gift of Life Medal of Honor.
Coincidentally, Bella’s granddad Walter Ruzek received a kidney from his wife Peggy way back on December 5th, 1989. He had been ill for 6 years with kidney disease and with several life-threatening episodes requiring hospitalizations. Peggy and Walter were among the early “non-related living donor” kidney donor and recipient teams. Walter has been a member of LI TRIO since February 1990 serving as co-president with Jeanne Eichhorn following Anne Treffeisen’s retirement and later as the Chapter’s president. He is currently on the board of directors and Chapter Treasurer.
Walter continues to marvel at the lives saved by organ donation and transplantation.
“Not a day goes by without me relishing the life-saving gift that I’ve received from Peggy.”
Peggy and Walter are pictured in the gallery above on a recent cruise celebrating his retirement.