I'll put the newest update on the top.
January 5 –
Daniel has gone to be with the Lord. He officially passed away at about 11:30 a.m. Baltimore time. Jen, Nathan, and Lynnae were with him. Although this outcome has been expected for several days, it is still very difficult for Jen. Daniel and Jen were married on February 28th after years of long distance dating and immigration paperwork. They knew his health was not good and something like this could happen. But they hoped for much more and for much longer. Just a few weeks ago he was telling me of their big long-term goals. Daniel was always very hopeful and optimistic.
But he knew this surgery could mean the end of his life. I got a text on Monday morning December 28th from my dad saying that Daniel would be having the triple transplant in about 12 hours. My heart stopped for a bit, knowing the risks of this surgery. It was still Sunday evening there. I was able to video call Daniel and we all talked with him. We both knew it was possibly the last time we would speak. I was able to tell him I loved him and that I was proud of the courage with which he faced all his hardships and risks. I wanted to tell him how happy I was that he had been so happy in his marriage for the last year – but I was so emotional I couldn’t speak. I wanted to pray with him but knew I couldn’t get the words out. So, he said he would. He prayed with calmness, peace, and assurance. He told me that he knew he may die in the surgery and that he was ready to go to heaven to be with the Lord if that was God’s will.
We all hoped that that would not happen. But in God’s good sovereign plan it has. God gave us 44 years with him. He had almost one year with his wife who loves him very much.
That morning (his night before the surgery), Hannah told me to get a screen shot with him and our 7 month-old daughter Katelyn. I’m so glad I did. This is the last picture I have of him.
January 4 –
Today Jen and Nathan and Lynnae were able to meet with Daniel’s surgeon and others on his team to get more detailed insight into the situation. On that first night after the transplant Daniel lost so much blood that his brain was severely damaged because of lack of oxygen. Over the past few days, they have had to increase the measures to keep him stable. Many of us have been praying for a miracle recovery. Instead of any sign of that recovery, the trends have been in the opposite direction.
The medical team at the University of Maryland has worked really hard to do what they can. One of the nurses there said that on that first night they had never seen so many people trying so hard to keep someone alive.
Nathan and Lynnae have been able to join Jen in the room spending time with Daniel. Please pray for all of them for strength for what lies ahead. My parents are in Denver because my Dad’s back prevents travel, and so that’s pretty tough for them. Of course, I am in Thailand and the Covid situation as complicated the travel scenarios, to say the least.
The assurance that so many people are following Daniel’s situation and praying for us encourages us greatly. God is giving grace and comfort.
January 2 –
Here is what I put up on my Facebook page earlier today.
First of all, let me express my heartfelt thanks for all the comments of encouragement, compassion, and promises of prayer for Daniel, Jen and the family. Thank you. It means more than you know.
It has been nearly two days since I updated anything, mostly because there is not much new to say. My other brother and sister are now out in Baltimore. (My Dad is dealing with really bad back pain and not able to travel, or I’m sure my parents would be there too.) They are with Jen. Only Jen is able to see Daniel. Praise God that at least she is able to do that.
Daniel has become more stable and is still alive. Machines are keeping him alive. But machines were keeping him alive for quite a while nine years ago after his first heart transplant. The great unknown now is the brain damage caused by the strokes and what that all means. Please pray for wisdom. Please pray for a miracle if that is God’s will. God is certainly able to do miracles, we do not doubt that. But God does not always choose to do miracles, and we know that too. Especially, please uphold Jen in your prayers, as I know so many of you are already doing.
January 1 - My older brother and sister are flying to Baltimore today to be with Jen (they likely will not be able to see Daniel). Please pray that God would give clear direction and wisdom as to what the next steps should be. Please pray for God's upholding grace and strength for all three. Please continue to pray for Daniel too. He is still with us. I do not know what if any consciousness he has right now. But pray for peace in his soul. God is able to work miracles. We do not doubt that. We know this is all in God's good hands and we pray His will be done and for God to be glorified in it all.
Dec 31 afternoon- I have sad news to report. When they tried to take Daniel off of sedation he wasn't responding as they hoped. So they did a CT scan and discovered that he had had several devastating strokes. The prognosis is not good. Please pray especially for Jen as she has to make heavy decisions. We know this is not a surprise to God. Psalm 139: 16 " Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them."
Dec 30 PM - Getting information because of the restrictions of Covid remains a frustration for all of us. Dan's wife Jen is not even allowed in the ICU area. It seems that today even she was not given a lot of new information. If things had changed I'm sure she would have been told that. So, I guess that means things remain basically the same. He is still in critical condition. There is some bleeding but not as bad as it initially was (thank the Lord for answered prayers!) Keep praying that his body will strengthen, heal, and not reject the new organs.
December 30 - Because of the covid situation and no one being able to be in the ICU with him, it seems a little harder to get information. (I’m of course far away as well.) But it seems that things have calmed down a little bit. I suppose at this point no bad news is at least – not bad news! And that’s good.
On Tuesday night they were planning on another exploration surgery today (Wednesday) like the one they did on Tuesday. During that surgery they were looking for the source of the bleeding that was such a concern. They actually didn’t find much bleeding in his chest or abdomen, but they did find and deal with a blood clot in his leg. But they have decided not to do another exploration surgery today after all. Their lack of urgency to do that procedure again seems promising. The bleeding is apparently much better. So I don’t know what to say as far as his condition. I think it is still quite serious but better than it was a day or so ago.
Dec 29 PM - Daniel did have surgery today, but it didn’t start until about until about 1:30 pm and it lasted about 5 hours. Overall, the report is good, although he is still in critical condition. The object of the surgery was to look for the source of bleeding in his abdomen and chest. They did not find significant bleeding. So that is an answer to prayer. That seems better than it was. They did, however, discover a blood clot in his leg and were able to remove it. Tomorrow they plan to do a similar surgery to check on things.
Dec. 29 AM - They are taking Daniel back into surgery. (This is not for the kidney transplant. That has been cancelled.) He had another procedure during the night to relieve pressure in his abdomen because of the bleeding. One issue now is that they are concerned about blood circulation in his legs. The situation remains very serious. So please keep praying for him. Thank you.
Dec 28 – PM
Daniel got out of surgery about 9 p.m. It seems the new heart and lungs are doing well. But he has extensive bleeding and that is a significant concern. So please pray God would intervene and cause this bleeding to stop quickly. Thanks so much!
Dec 28 - Daniel went into surgery at 11:15 a.m. At 3:35 p.m. the nurse reported that the surgery was going well but that they were still working on him.
Dec. 28 AM - There is no word yet. His wife left him at the Operating Room about 7:15 this morning Baltimore time.