2 Your Health: Heart recipient celebrates Valentine's Day - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

2 Your Health: Heart recipient celebrates Valentine's Day

2 Your Health: Heart recipient celebrates Valentine's Day

Posted: Updated:
CHARLESTON, SC -

Vernelle Dickerson and her sister Geneva enjoy taking care of their 99 year old mother.  But it wasn't long ago that Dickerson was  the person needing help.  In March of 2003 she was diagnosed with leukemia.  She underwent chemotherapy for the cancer but says she soon found herself in a battle for her life.

"The chemotherapy it resulted in damaging my mitrovalve so in 2004 I had to have open heart surgery to have the mitrovalve replaced."  Dickerson said

And if cancer were not enough, Dickerson was soon in a war with her own body. She says her heart would be challenged again. 

"In 2009 I was in Bethesda Maryland and had a heart attack.  I never fully recuperated from the heart attack.  Then in June 2011 I had to have a heart transplant" Dickerson said. 

Dickerson was familiar with transplantations.  She met donors and recipients while working at the Medical University of South Carolina. She knew heart transplants were rare, but her faith and her family comforted her. 

She said "(I) really didn't have a lot of fear in not getting a heart I knew I was going to get one."

 Father's Day, June 19. 2011, she became the 452nd person in the state to receive a heart transplant. 

"All I remember doing was crying and thanking God you know for this heart on Fathers Day and the chaplain said that was the greatest gift I could ever receive."

Lifepoint is the designated organ procurement organization throughout most of  South Carolina.  They procured the heart that now beats in Dickerson's body.

Lifepoint provides organ, tissue and other donor services to 62 hospitals throughout South Carolina, including Ashley River Tower at MUSC, where Dickerson underwent transplant surgery.

She has become a spokesperson for the organization.  She uses her voice to tell others that when one life ends or changes, another one can continue with the gift of an organ or tissue.

She says on Valentine's Day, adding your name to the donor registry is a true sign of love.

"When I look at valentine day it is all about love and then for me to have received a new heart."

  • College football game day means big business in the Low Country

    College football game day means big business in the Low Country

    Saturday, August 30 2014 10:52 PM EDT2014-08-31 02:52:16 GMT
    Clemson's season opener ended not long ago, with the 16th ranked Tigers taking on number 12 Georgia. In the Low Country, these games also mean big business for local sports bars, and for stores that sell sports merchandise. "It has been busy from what I can see." Danielle Glassberg says when she married her husband; she was also married into the Clemson football fan base."We are buying our Clemson shirts for the season. We are going to a game in a couple of weeks so we need to make sure we ar...
    Clemson's season opener ended not long ago, with the 16th ranked Tigers taking on number 12 Georgia. In the Low Country, these games also mean big business for local sports bars, and for stores that sell sports merchandise. "It has been busy from what I can see." Danielle Glassberg says when she married her husband; she was also married into the Clemson football fan base."We are buying our Clemson shirts for the season. We are going to a game in a couple of weeks so we need to make sure we ar...
  • Dispatch confirms a crews are responding to a fire at McCrady's

    Fire reported at popular downtown restaurant

    Fire reported at popular downtown restaurant

    Saturday, August 30 2014 10:04 PM EDT2014-08-31 02:04:37 GMT
    Fire crews are responding to a fire at McCrady's on East Bay Street. Dispatch tells News 2 that the fire was called in alittle after 2:30 p.m. News 2 has a crew on the way.
    Fire crews are responding to a fire at McCrady's on East Bay Street. Dispatch tells News 2 that the fire was called in alittle after 2:30 p.m. News 2 has a crew on the way.
  • Pedestrians seriously hurt

    Man arrested for a hit-and-run accident on Folly Beach

    Man arrested for a hit-and-run accident on Folly Beach

    Saturday, August 30 2014 6:45 PM EDT2014-08-30 22:45:32 GMT
    The Charleston County Sheriff's Office said Andrew Robert Lanzaro was arrested on Saturday morning, after he reportedly struck two pedestrians and fled the scene at about 2:15 a.m. The incident happened on West Ashley Avenue between 2nd and 3rd Street. Two people werestruck by a 2004 Honda CRV, when itswerved off the road. Authorities said the car,which belongs to Lanzaro,was located by the Folly Beach Police Department at his residence. The vehicle had severe front end damage to the windshie...
    The Charleston County Sheriff's Office said Andrew Robert Lanzaro was arrested on Saturday morning, after he reportedly struck two pedestrians and fled the scene at about 2:15 a.m. The incident happened on West Ashley Avenue between 2nd and 3rd Street. Two people werestruck by a 2004 Honda CRV, when itswerved off the road. Authorities said the car,which belongs to Lanzaro,was located by the Folly Beach Police Department at his residence. The vehicle had severe front end damage to the windshie...
Powered by WorldNow

210 W. Coleman Blvd.
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

Telephone: 843.216.4875
Fax: 843.881.3410
Email: news@wcbd.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.