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Heart transplant recipient sends teddy bear with recording of heartbeat to family of teen donor

Father receives teddy bear with his dead son’s heartbeat from donor whose life transplant saved

  • Stephanie Reid shared heartbreaking video of husband John Reid being overcome with emotion as he opened package from recipient of son’s heart  
  • Their son, Dakota, was killed in a car crash in January 2019; he was 16 years old
  • Dakota’s organs were then donated with his heart going to Robert O’Connor
  • In the video, John is seen opening a large box and reading a note placed inside
  • ‘I went for my one-year check-up this past week. While we were there the staff made arrangements with the echocardiogram team…,’ the letter reads 
  • ‘Dakota’s heartbeat…’ John says tearfully before opening the Build-A-Bear box  

A Virginia father was brought to tears when he was gifted a teddy bear with the sound of his late son’s heartbeat from the man who received the 16-year-old’s heart. 

Stephanie Reid shared a heartbreaking video of her husband, John Reid, being overcome with emotion as he opened the package from the recipient of his son’s heart, Robert O’Connor. 

Their son, Dakota, was killed in a crash in January 2019 when he was riding with a driver who pulled out in front of an SUV.

In the video, John is seen opening a large box and grabbing a note that was placed inside. 

John begins reading the letter aloud, saying: 'We would have preferred to give this to you in person, but not sure when that would happen'

In the video, John is seen opening a large box and grabbing a note that was placed inside. John begins reading the letter aloud, saying: ‘We would have preferred to give this to you in person, but not sure when that would happen.’

John, who says he talks to O’Connor daily, begins reading the letter aloud, saying: ‘We would have preferred to give this to you in person, but not sure when that would happen.’

‘As you know, I went for my one-year check-up this past week. While we were there the staff made arrangements with the echocardiogram team…,’ John reads before trailing off.

He then pulls out the Build-A-Bear box and continues reading the note. 

‘Dakota’s heartbeat…’ John says through tears before opening the Build-A-Bear box. 

John pulls out the adorable teddy bear that has ‘Best Dad Ever’ written on its shirt. He then squeezes the bear’s paw and holds it close to his ear. 

He wasn’t able to control his emotions as he listened to the sound of Dakota’s heartbeat. 

'Dakota's heartbeat...' John says through tears before opening the Build-A-Bear box

John pulls out the adorable teddy bear that has 'Best Dad Ever' written on its shirt

‘Dakota’s heartbeat…’ John says through tears before opening the Build-A-Bear box. John pulls out the adorable teddy bear that has ‘Best Dad Ever’ written on its shirt (right)

John wasn't able to control his emotions as he listened to the sound of Dakota's heartbeat

John wasn’t able to control his emotions as he listened to the sound of Dakota’s heartbeat

Dakota Reid

John and Stephanie Reid

The Reid family (John and Stephanie, right) didn’t know where Dakota’s (left) organs were going when they were donated, but they have learned that their son helped save a farmer who needed a kidney and pancreas and a 21-year-old man who can see due to his son’s eyes.

In an interview with CBS, John said: ‘When I got the bear, my heart was filled with joy. I did not expect any of this.’

‘To give the gift of life is to continue God’s plan for both the donor families and the recipient,’ John added. 

The Reid family didn’t know where Dakota’s organs were going when they were donated, but they have learned that their son helped save a farmer who needed a kidney and pancreas and a 21-year-old man who can see due to his son’s eyes. 

John said he and O’Connor are also planning to meet in person for the first time. 

‘We are blood now. We are family,’ John added.  

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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