OKC Family Wrought With Tragedy Seek Heart Transplant For Mom

Monday, November 19th 2012, 12:05 am
By: News 9

A family that has been no stranger to tragedy faces a million-dollar challenge.

Mary Anderson is at Oklahoma City's Integris Baptist Medical Center in the ICU waiting for a heart transplant. Her son Aubrey and daughter Allie wait to hear some good news after a year filled with loss. They have not made holiday plans because it has been touch and go recently.

"Everyone's planning for Christmas and stuff and we don't even know what we're going to be doing next week," said Mary's daughter Allie.

Mary is a top priority for a heart transplant. Doctors said her heart was only working at about 10 percent of what it should. She has been hooked up to wires and monitors for days.

"The other day, the doctor told her she literally had a broken heart," explained Allie.

"I'm just hoping that with a new heart, that she can get better and move on," added Aubrey.

Allie is just 17 years old. Aubrey is 24. The two have had to grow up quickly. Their father died 12 years ago, and just six months ago their brother died following a plane crash in Kansas.

Austin suffered burns over 90 percent of his body trying to save his friend. He died a short time later in the hospital. His mom was healthy enough six months ago to hail Austin as a hero. Now Aubrey and Allie, hope their hero, their mom, keeps fighting.

"I told her, 'What would Austin say to you if he was here? He would tell you to fight,'" said Aubrey.

These kids said they want their mom healthy and hoped a matching heart would be found soon.

"Throughout everything that we've been through she's always been the one to keep us stronger. She never took time out for herself to heal. She's just been trying to help us. She was always tough," said Allie.

Aubrey and Allie haven't wrapped their head around the cost of the surgery. It's expected to cost at least $900,000 but they said there is no price on life and would somehow figure out a way to keep going as a family.

They also told News 9 that Mary had been going to work as a massage therapist every day until recently, even though she had to wear and external defibrillator. They said she never wanted to give up on providing for the family