Father, Shawn Zimmerman suffered unimaginable tragedy when his 14-year-old daughter Katelyn died after being hit by a drunk driver in Florida. Even after her passing, she proved she had a big heart.
The father of three, who sadly also lost his son Dylan, thought he’d heard her final heartbeat, but that was until he met this remarkable 14-year-old boy.
Zimmerman put on a stethoscope and listened to Katelyn’s heart beating strong in the chest of Alj Jeffries.
“It put us at peace knowing that Katelyn’s heart is still beating, even though it’s not in her,” Shawn Zimmerman told Alj’s family in a North Carolina hospital.
Alj received a new lease of life in March when he was given a lifesaving transplant from Katelyn. He had been struggling with heart disease since infancy.
“Thank you for the gift of being able to see more in life,” Alj told the Zimmermans, with tears in his eyes. “Thank you for letting me have a second chance.”
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart – thank you for being my miracle,” he added, as he broke down.
Alj’s mother Tina Turner wanted to share the moment of hearing his new heart with Katelyn’s dad Shawn.
“My gratitude can’t be put into words,” Turner said. “I know how much you sacrificed to give another a brand-new life.”
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