Real Life

Woman marries stranger who saved her life through organ donation

Their love blossomed under the strangest of circumstances.

Two years ago, Heather Krueger was suffering with stage four liver disease. After being sick for two years, Heather was desperate for a donor, and was told she would be unlikely to survive much longer without one.
But in a country with over 100,000 people on the transplant list, Heather’s chances were slim.
Her luck changed when Christopher Dempsey overheard a colleague talking about Heather’s situation at his workplace near Chicago, US.
Her cousin spoke about the desperate times the family found themselves in, and how Heather would soon die without finding a donor match.
"I just thought to myself, I would want someone to help me or my family in that situation," Christopher told the BBC.
The 38-year-old immediately got himself tested, and found that he was indeed a match for Heather, now 27.
In February 2015, Heather got the call from Chris telling her he would donate part of his liver, admitting she and her mum cried tears of joy after speaking to him.
In the weeks leading up to the transplant, the pair met in person and began spending more and more time together, rallying donations and going for dinners.
“I just started thinking, she's a really nice girl, she is somebody I would like to get to know," Christopher says.
In March 2015, the transplant was performed successfully and the pair were in recovery.
But the icing on the cake to this story is that 8 months later, after falling in love in such desperate circumstances, Christopher asked Heather to be his bride.
A year and a half after their surgery, the couple wed in Chicago.
“I think it was definitely more emotional – maybe more so for her and her parents – knowing what we had both been through.”