Favorite Guest Moments

Guests submitted their favorite memory and photo during their stay at the Family House.


Past Family House guests reflect on the positive aspects of their transplant journey while providing encouragement to other transplant families.

Submitted by: Jeff Campbell

“The day Wendy was released from the hospital and was able to stay at the family house and we met some wonderful people and made some great friends. The staff and facilities are excellent!!!! Thank you for this awesome place to call home in the most difficult time.”

Submitted by: David Schauber

“After a long drive to Philadelphia for a day of post-transplant hospital tests & appointments I walked into Gift of Life. There I saw my ICU nurse who cared for me during my transplant dressed for GOL’s Hawaiian luau night. She and other volunteers had prepared a delicious meal and once again was caring for & serving all of us.  It was heartwarming to see her, the GOL staff & hear their encouraging words!”

Submitted by: Andrew Vavra

“I have two favorite memories of Family house.  The first one is when I returned two years after my transplant with a group of my friends from work to bake cookies for the guests staying there that week.  It was a very rewarding experience and it felt great to “”pay it forward.” My second memory is fairly recent when a group of transplant recipients living donors  and donor family members from the area joined Gift of Life’s Colleen Duran this past February for WHYY’s annual membership drive on National Organ Donor Day.  It was wonderful meeting others who have made the journey and is something I look forward to repeating.”

Submitted by: Patty Sigur

“My daughter Nicole Kohr underwent her double lung transplant at Penn in June of 2019. The transplant house was such a special and healing place for all of us.”

Submitted by: Nicole Ward

“The Family House was our home away from home for 3 months while waiting for a transplant and a military transfer for my husband from Florida to New Jersey. In those 3 months our kids got to see their first snow, we celebrated Easter, one little boy’s second birthday, and Mother’s Day. We will always hold the Family House dear for being there for us during such an uncertain and challenging time.”

Submitted by: Joan Shuck

“I found it very comforting at the Family House. I met some people that were going through similar situations and we would talk about the ups and downs. Talking helped me a great deal.”


Submitted by: Linda Ciota

“The first time I went to the Family House it was for my evaluation for a lung transplant. My doctor had said go for the testing and get on their radar. I had no idea how sick I really was then. On my first day of testing I was told my lungs were functioning at 30% and I had a life expectancy of 3 to 5 years. I was also giving the survival statistics for post-transplant and they aren’t that great either. I was 53 had a daughter still in college and my son was just starting his career.  I had lost both my sister in law and my mother that year and I thought I wasn’t going to make it emotionally through the week. When I got to the house that evening we spoke to the social worker she calmed me down and put some of the statistics in a better light. She also said I should try to talk to the other guests at dinner that evening.  She said people who were post-transplant could give me some prospective.  I spoke to a few family members and transplant patients that night and connected with two guests going through the same testing as me. That was December 2017. I have been listed since March 2018. I am still pre-transplant but have been back to the Family House for many of my doctor visits.”

Submitted by: Dustin Myers

“I don’t have just one story or memory of the gift of life house but ill share a few. I was here from December 30th thru the middle of February. I had received a liver transplant and was there to stay while I healed and went to doctors’ appointments twice a week. During that time I met caring and wonderful staff counselors and shuttle drivers. The home cook heroes always provided yummy dinners every evening which was something to look forward too. Another thing that always stuck out was the never ending baked goods and sweets they always seemed to have I felt like a big kid whenever I wandered into the kitchen and took a treat!! I’m very thankful for the Gift of Life Family House and its staff and volunteers.”

Submitted by: Angelina Bagu

“I can’t explain one memory alone it’s too much to be thankful and grateful to have been honored with the love and caring I received in your place. You guys rock from staff to visitors and my new found family friends xoxoxo”

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