Mother of Organ Donor Gets to See Recipient Walk His Daughter Down the Aisle
It was a special moment for all involved.
Kellye Pummill’s deceased daughter, Marissa Pummill, was able to walk down the aisle in spirit this summer as Troy Westover, who was saved by Marissa’s liver, walked his daughter down the aisle.
Pummill, who attended the Idaho wedding on June 16, said it was bittersweet to watch the moment.
“Marissa will never be able to walk down the aisle but she was obviously there in spirit through Troy,” Pummill told InsideEdition.com.
Westover, 43, was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2014 and doctors told him he had two days to two weeks to live.
“He went from healthy one day to not being coherent the next day. I broke down and cried and we called all of our family together,” Karen Westover, Troy Westover’s wife, told InsideEdition.com.
Westover was then put on the donor’s list.
Marissa took her own life less than two weeks later and her organs were donated to Westover and five other individuals.
“When he got his transplant, the doctors told us it was from a 21-year-old female. It wasn’t until we got a card from Kellye two months after transplant that we found out more about Marissa,” Karen Westover told InsideEdition.com. “A year after that we found each other and started having contact with one another.”
Westover's own brother had taken his own life so she knew what it was to live through it.
When Troy Westover’s daughter, Kiasa VanCleave, 20, began inviting people to her wedding, she knew she wanted to personally invite Pummill.
Pummill, who lives in Arizona, flew to Idaho, where she was finally able to meet the family her daughter had helped.
“It was beautiful," Pummill said. "Everyone welcomed me in like they had known me forever. They felt like family and I fit in immediately."
VanCleave made sure that Marissa’s memory was honored on her big day. She had a charm with a picture of Marissa attached to her bouquet, which she gave to Pummill on a necklace after the wedding.
Marissa’s dog was also present at the wedding, clad in a little tuxedo.
“Knowing that Marissa had given the gift that she did, Kellye was on the front row with all the family. She immediately felt like family to us,” Westover said. “It was amazing to see all of that happen and have Kellye there. It meant the world to us.”
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