Donald Arthur's story begins with a diagnosis cardiomyopathy in 1989. He became so debilitated he says he could hardly walk two blocks. He received his heart transplant in 1996. Only 15 months later, he finished his first New York City Marathon. While many recipient and donor families remain anonymous, Donald Arthur met and formed a close attachment with his donor family. His donor's brother later completed a marathon with him.
As a man in his 60's who came to marathoning later in life, Donald Arthur would be an inspiration even without the heart transplant angle. As part of Transplant Speakers International he spreads the word on how people can enlist as organ donors and share the gift of life. Donald has completed 27 marathons in 16 states. His plans are very ambitious, to complete one a month. I wouldn't recommend that schedule for anybody, but he is going strong.
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Photo © Wendy Bumgardner 2008