Sam Wyche honored for post-transplant advocacy - FOX Carolina 21

Sam Wyche honored for post-transplant advocacy

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CLEMSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Former NFL coach Sam Wyche knows he’s lucky to be standing before the Clemson Chamber of Commerce. He'd battled heart disease for nearly 16 years when in September of 2016, his heart finally gave out.

"At the last minute after I was not supposed to be alive anymore.” explained Wyche, “We waited through the weekend and a heart showed up at the very last minute. Literally within an hour when I was going to die."

Doctors told Wyche finding a perfect match heart transplant was one in million chance, especially in his final hour. Now that he’s back to living a normal life, he’s made it his mission to raise awareness for transplants and organ donations.

"To make sure everyone at least has a chance to answer the question, 'Are you a donor? And why not if you're not?',” said Wyche.

His impact has been so great, that several groups involved with finding transplant organ donors, Sharing Hope SC and Donate Life South Carolina, honored him Thursday. Wyche has also been selected to ride in the Tournament of Roses Parade in January.

David Destefano, President of Sharing Hope SC, said Wyche is 1 of 17 people chosen around the country to ride on the float.

This year’s theme is called “The Gift of Time.”

Wyche was also given an award for his service in raising awareness around the country for organ donations.

"I think it will be a great way to not only honor the donor and his family, but also honor Sam,” explained Destefano. “On what he's done not only for transplant recipients, but also to increase awareness donation across the country." 

Wyche encourages everyone to become a donor so they can give others the gift of time.

"I feel so good and so blessed that everything worked out for me that I just want more people to have a story to tell,” said Wyche.

For more information on becoming an organ donor click here.

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