NILES, Ohio (WKBN) – Wednesday, we learned that a Trumbull County foster girl battling a congenital liver condition will be getting the life-saving transplant she needs, from a complete stranger, today we’ve learned more about that hero and how the community is rallying around him to help during his lengthy recovery.
Four-year-old Jamie is still at UPMC in Pittsburgh. She’s spent the last five months there.
But now, a glimmer of hope, from 28-year-old David Denovchek of Niles.
He’s been asked by UPMC not to do any in-person interviews until after the transplant, but spoke to WKBN over the phone Thursday. Denovchek said he saw our initial report on Jamie last month and knew he had to help.
“They were mentioning the criteria, the age, which I fit, the body condition, which I thought I fit, and then you said she was O-negative, and I thought, “Ah, goodness I’m O-negative, so immediately after the story i actually contacted UPMC.”
After some interviews, tests and blood work, David ended up being a match, and eventually the primary donor.
“There were a lot of emotions, a little shock, it was a little overwhelming for a day,” Denovchek said.
His co-workers at All Creatures Animal Hospital call him an angel.
“It didn’t even phase him, and he doesn’t even think like he’s doing something extraordinary, he just wants to help and we’re all like, ‘That’s amazing, you’re definitely a hero,’ and he’s like, ‘No I just want to help,'” Sally Outhwaite with All Creatures said.
They’re supporting him through what will be an extensive recovery process.
“He has a job to come back to, we love him that much,” Office Manager Kelley Baumiller said.
David will be out of work for at least 12 weeks, something that’s not covered by short term disability. Now folks in the community are coming forward to help him out.
Carroll’s lawn service says they’re planning on cutting his grass while he’s recovering.
“He seems like a nice, humble guy. He doesn’t really want to ask for much, but we’re going to hook him up,” Carroll’s Lawn Service Owner Charles Carroll said.
“It’s really been overwhelming in a very positive way, I didn’t understand how big this was,” Denovchek said.
The surgery is scheduled tentatively for next week.
David says he’d like to meet Jamie after she’s recovered from surgery. You can donate to David’s cause at GoFundMe.com.