Trevor Sulliva first found out he was suffering from heart failure in 2015 after thinking he was coming down with a cold. Fortunately, shortly after being informed that he would need a heart transplat to live, a donor became available in November of the same year and the 15-year-old immediately underwent surgery to save his life.
His father, Philip Sullivan, captured the emotional moment as Trevor woke up from the surgery and he took his first breaths coming off the anesthesia. The video has become viral and the family has been using it as part of their mission to raise awareness for organ donation to save the lives of others on the waiting list just like Trevor.
“I can breathe again,” a tearful Trevor says in the video.
Sullivan explained in an interview that his son's heart was so enlarged that it was putting pressure on his lungs. The new heart immediately brought Trevor relief and intense joy at the fact that he could breathe with ease again.
Supporters of the Sullivan family have set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise awareness for Organ Donation and urge everyone to share the video of Trevor as well as support their cause with the hashtag #DonateLife. As of this writing, the campaign has raised more than $60,000 of the $250,000 goal to help the family cover the costs of the on-going care that Trevor will need post-surgery.
According to reports, Trevor is recovering well and his body has not rejected his new heart.
A Facebook page that has been set up to support Trevor, Team Trevor, is full of well-wishers and photos and videos of other people who have braved the long waiting list for heart transplants and have underwent the surgery, thanks to generous donors who have opted to become organ donors upon passing.
Many companies are being vocal about spreading awareness and dispelling myths about becoming an organ donor. Even the match-making app, Tinder, is using its popularity to raise awareness for the cause.
The family continues to be advocates for organ donation and even Trevor himself is back on his personal social media page to spread the word for all people to list themselves as eye and tissue organ donors.