Police Officer Donates Organ to Baby Having Liver Failure: 'We'll Always Have a Connection'
No life is too small or insignificant to save — that’s why this New Hampshire cop donated his organ to a months-old baby experiencing stage 4 liver failure.
Lt. Steven Tenney, 40, of the Keene Police Department says he’s recovering well after donating part of his liver to little Sloan St. James, who is now 9 months old.
“The police department here was very supportive,” he told InsideEdition.com. “It’s a long recovery process. I wasn’t able to go back to full duty for about two months so it takes a lot out of you physically, but overall it’s rewarding and definitely worth the decision.”
He explained he wanted to give Sloan a fighting chance.
She was just 3 months old when she was diagnosed with stage 4 liver failure due to biliary atresia, a life-threatening condition that causes blockage of the bile ducts.
That was when Tenney said he saw the family’s plea on Facebook.
“She’s an adorable baby — very happy baby,” Tenney said. “The St. James’, they’re great people and they’re a great family.
After discussing with his wife, he said he wanted to begin the tests to see if he would be a candidate to donate his liver, inspired by his own children, who are 10 and 18 years old
“I love kids anyway but you want to be a parent,” he said. “No one wants to go through that type of thing and I couldn’t imagine what they were going through.”
The pair underwent the living donor transplant procedure in September and while the surgery was a success, Sloan’s parents said on Facebook that she continues to struggle with complications stemming from her condition.
“We received the biopsy results […] and they were discouraging and showed another bout of moderate rejection,” they announced on Facebook. “Being in there is so traumatizing to all of us. It rocks Sloan — being woken up for vitals, having an IV put in her again […] needless to say, we pray she does not have to be readmitted.”
As for Tenney, he explained he will always have a special bond with Sloan and her family.
“I’m sure we will always have a connection,” he said.