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."

  • Governor to meet with leaders in Atlantic Beach Tuesday

    Governor to meet with leaders in Atlantic Beach Tuesday

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:18 AM EDT2014-07-29 14:18:06 GMT
    Governor Nikki Haley will be meeting with Atlantic Beach officials Tuesday morning. In May, she met with local leaders and said Bike Fest should end after this year's violence that coincided with the Memorial Day Bike Fest. During the May meeting, she privately met with several Horry County leaders including Myrtle Beach Mayor John Rhodes and Horry County Chairman Mark Lazarus. She was reportedly shown a five minute compilation of Bike Fest and Memorial Day Weekend clips found on YouTube. "I ...
    Governor Nikki Haley will be meeting with Atlantic Beach officials Tuesday morning. In May, she met with local leaders and said Bike Fest should end after this year's violence that coincided with the Memorial Day Bike Fest. During the May meeting, she privately met with several Horry County leaders including Myrtle Beach Mayor John Rhodes and Horry County Chairman Mark Lazarus. She was reportedly shown a five minute compilation of Bike Fest and Memorial Day Weekend clips found on YouTube. "I ...
  • General Motors award-winning & best-selling pick-up truck recalled 9 times

    General Motors award-winning & best-selling pick-up truck recalled 9 times

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 4:06 AM EDT2014-07-29 08:06:45 GMT
    The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra have been recalled 6 times in 2014, which is more than any other vehicle sold in the country.Both pick-ups have seen 9 recalls issued since they went on sale last year. Those recalls did not affect all of the vehicles sold. Some were for fewer than 500 trucks for issues like loose floor mats.GM says the award-winning Silverado is still its best-selling vehicle in America and the Sierra is close behind.
    The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra have been recalled 6 times in 2014, which is more than any other vehicle sold in the country.Both pick-ups have seen 9 recalls issued since they went on sale last year. Those recalls did not affect all of the vehicles sold. Some were for fewer than 500 trucks for issues like loose floor mats.GM says the award-winning Silverado is still its best-selling vehicle in America and the Sierra is close behind.
  • Nissan recalling addition 226,000 vehicles because of defective airbags

    Nissan recalling addition 226,000 vehicles because of defective airbags

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 3:56 AM EDT2014-07-29 07:56:40 GMT
    Nissan is recalling more than 226,000 additional vehicles over a defective air bag that has affected much of the global auto industry. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Saturday that Nissan North America Inc. is recalling certain lines of its Infiniti, Maxima, Pathfinder and Sentra cars for the model years 2002 to 2004. Faulty air bags have already been blamed for the recall of millions of cars around the world in recent years, including those made by BMW, Chrysler, Ford...
    Nissan is recalling more than 226,000 additional vehicles over a defective air bag that has affected much of the global auto industry. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Saturday that Nissan North America Inc. is recalling certain lines of its Infiniti, Maxima, Pathfinder and Sentra cars for the model years 2002 to 2004. Faulty air bags have already been blamed for the recall of millions of cars around the world in recent years, including those made by BMW, Chrysler, Ford...
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.