Bride given away by man who received her father’s donated heart

Jeni Stepien’s father died in 2006 and she tracked down the man who received his transplanted heart


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The Independent US

Although Jeni Stepien’s father died in a car crash in 2006, she was determined to have him represented at her wedding.

When she walked down the aisle a decade later, she was given away by her father - or at least his heart in the body of a different man.

The bride had tracked down the heart transplant recipient in New Jersey and wrote him a letter, asking him to give her away on her big day.

Arthur Thompson agreed to travel to Pittsburgh, for the wedding last weekend, according to CBS.

"She said, ‘Dear Tom, I’m the daughter of the man whose heart is inside you, and I’m going to get married on August 6th," said Mr Thompson.

"One further thing, if you’re willing, would you walk me down the aisle?’"

It was the first time the two had met.

The bride touched Mr Thompson’s chest during the ceremony and cried.

"It was just like having my dad here, and better," Ms Stepien said.

"We get to share this story with other people, and other people see that organ donors do matter."