A 98-year-old war veteran donated his liver. “He gave one more gift”

A 98-year-old war veteran donated his liver.  "He gave one more gift"

Orville Allen is the oldest-ever organ donor in the United States. After his death, his liver was transplanted to a 72-year-old patient.

The Associated Press reported about the transplant.

According to the transplant company, Mid-America Transplant, Orville Allen died on May 29 and his liver was successfully transplanted to a 72-year-old woman. — The liver is a resistant organ. We’ve dealt with donors of all age groups, Kevin Lee, president of Mid-America Transplant, told the AP.

“He gave one more gift”

The man was a veteran of two wars, a farmer and an agricultural teacher. He enjoyed good health, but on May 27 he had an accident. He developed cerebral edema. As the family prepared to say goodbye to the patient, hospital staff asked if they would consider donating his liver. The family was surprised, considering the man’s age.

Knowing the character of their father – who was always the first to help other people, helpful and kind – the family did not hesitate for too long.

“It went from a sad loss of dad to a ray of joy because he was doing what he had done his whole life,” said Mitchelle, his daughter. “He gave one more gift,” she emphasized.

Huge demand for transplants in the USA

Previously, the oldest liver donor was Cecil Lockhart from West Virginia. He died in 2021 at the age of 95, and his liver was successfully transplanted into another patient.

People aged 65 or older in the first four months of 2024 accounted for about 12 percent of deceased organ donors, the AP reports.

“Organ donation at an advanced age can be a success,” said Dr. David Klassen, medical director of UNOS (a nonprofit organization that operates the only organ procurement and transplantation network in the United States) in a statement. He noted, however, that organs age in different ways. Many transplant centers do not consider hearts from older donors.

Currently, there are over 100,000 Americans on the patient lists waiting for a transplant.

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