My name is Brendan Morrison and I am a 27-year old Lung Transplant Recipient living in Wenatchee, WA.
Growing up I was an active kid. Everything from soccer to running to snowboarding and everything in between, I was into it. The whole core of my being was built by spending time outside and pushing myself in various activities.
In the summer of 2015 just after my sophomore year of college, I started to notice my fitness declining despite my active lifestyle. Things that used to be easy, like going out for a run or a hike started to become more and more difficult. It was at this point that my family and I began to seek answers from various lung specialists in Washington and around the country.
Despite meeting with some of the top doctors in the pulmonary field and having multiple different tests and scans done, no one was able to give me a firm diagnosis. My case was like nothing they had seen before. Over the next couple of months, my lung function continued to decline until I required supplemental oxygen to go about my daily activities. Thanks to the help of my family and friends I was able to stay healthy enough to finish school, but my ability to be active in the outdoors was almost nonexistent.
Just after I graduated from college in the winter of 2018, my lung function had declined to the point where my doctors advised me to pursue lung transplant. I applied to a number of different centers around the country, but because of the complexity of my condition and lack of a diagnosis, Duke Medical Center was the only place that accepted me. My family and I relocated to Durham, NC in early 2019 and I received my double lung transplant on May 15, 2019.
The results of my lung transplant have been nothing short of spectacular. Though there have been some bumps along the way, I still could not be more thankful to my donor and my second chance at life. Since leaving the hospital I have not needed any supplemental oxygen and I have been able to return to many of the outdoor hobbies I enjoyed before I got sick.
About 2 years after my lung transplant, my coordinator at Duke reached out to me and asked if I would like to join the Lung Transplant Foundation as a mentor. I could not have said yes fast enough. The opportunity to speak with others going through the transplant process and to be a positive force in their journeys is such an honor. Giving back to the transplant community brings me so much joy and I am so thankful that an organization like the Lung Transplant Foundation exists.
Are you or someone you know in need of a mentor?
NOW could be the ideal time to request a peer to walk alongside of you on your transplant journey. No matter what stage you are or your role—patient or caregiver—we have mentors trained and experienced, ready to help. Learn more on our Mentorship page.