The heart that once belonged to a 25-year-old man who died in a car accident has helped save a teen's life.
Nicholas Peters died nearly two years ago in a car crash and now his heart has helped save a young teen's life.
Jean Paul Marceaux contracted a virus as a baby, which led to cardiomyopathy which is a condition in which "the heart muscle’s ability to pump blood is reduced," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). He got his first heart transplant at age two but it began to fail about 10 years later. Peters's heart ended up replacing Marceaux's which in turn saved his life. "He decided way before his accident he wanted to be an organ donor. He told me, 'Mom, if anything ever happens to me, I want to donate my organs.' So, we honored that wish when he took his last breath," his mother told KHOU 11.
Nicholas Peters donated his heart, eyes, liver, pancreas and kidneys, allowing pieces of him to live on through five people. His mother hopes to meet all of them someday.— KHOU 11 News Houston (@KHOU) October 23, 2020
The two families met for the first time in person on May 14 in New Orleans. Peters’ mother, Maria Peters Clark was seen on video placing a stethoscope to the teen's chest. “Oh, my gosh, it’s so strong,” she said of the heartbeat. According to KFOR, Clark is “happy to know that this young man can live a healthy life and be vibrant and, you know, just continue on his life. And I’m just so honored to be a part of that.” The young teen loves sports and hopes to "be on a baseball team. I like to ride my bike.” Thanks to Peters’ heart, now he can fulfill his dreams!
Clark told Good Morning America she knew she wanted to donate her 25-year-old's organs after he had passed. "I said, 'We can't bury all of this magic, that we have to share,'" Clark, the mother of three surviving children, shared, describing her son as "the life of the party." Speaking of her meeting with Marceaux, she said, "He came in and he just hugged me. He had a strong hug, just like Nick did. And then to hear the heartbeat, it was so strong and so full of life. It came through the stethoscope so strong, just beating like a drum," she said of Marceaux's heartbeat. "I was so connected to him because he was so much like Nick."
In an emotional meeting at a Metairie restaurant, Maria Peters Clark finally got to meet the New Iberia boy in whose chest her late son’s heart continues to beat.https://t.co/SAvhEItDa6— KPLC (@KPLC7News) May 14, 2022
The meeting was just as emotional for Marceaux's family. His mother Candace Armstrong regards Clark's family as part of her own now. "We feel like we know him," said Armstrong. "We talk about him, Nick, like he’s part of his family, and he is. It’s not donor anymore, it’s Nick." Both moms hope to inspire others to opt for organ donation. "Nobody wants to talk about what happens when somebody passes away. It’s an uncomfortable situation," said Armstrong. "But it’s very important because someone like Jean Paul, he wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for organ donation."
Cover Image Source: YouTube | Good Morning America