Home Heart Transplant Man receives heart transplant and walks from Cleveland Clinic to the White House

Man receives heart transplant and walks from Cleveland Clinic to the White House

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Man receives heart transplant and walks from Cleveland Clinic to the White House

He left on his birthday and an Ohio man who walked all the way from Cleveland arrived at the White House. It happened on what he considers his new birthday, the day he received a heart transplant.

28 days ago, surrounded by his doctors and nurses, 62-year-old Gene Shimandle left the front doors of the Cleveland Clinic where he completed his more than 350-mile journey in Washington, DC.

He's walking to raise awareness for organ donation and in honor of his donor, a 20-year-old man who lost his life in a car accident, Shimandle walked through rain, sleet, and even a blizzard; sometimes sleeping in a rigged-up hammock, and says it's all worth it.

Shimandle says, "This is a wonderful place to be sharing and enjoying and celebrating my one-year heart transplant anniversary; that trek that I made from the Cleveland Clinic to this moment has been truly, truly a blessing."

While in Washington, Shimandle plans to meet with Ohio senators about organ donation. He'll also have them sign a flag which he will present to his donor family when he returns to Ohio.

He's had people he's met along the way also sign it and has about 400 signatures.



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