A Texas man meets for the first time his heart donor's mother.
Source: KEYE TV We are Austin
The Gruene,Texas lifestyle is charming, family oriented and laid back. It's a place where many families head to eat at the Gristmill Restaurant.
People talk about the usual, but the conversation at one table was unlike any other.
Six years ago, Russell Renaud's heart attacked him. The weeks and months passed painfully by for four years until 2008, when the now 69 year old became eligible for a heart transplant.
"It came down to Missy making a horrible decision at a horrible time," said Russell Renaud.
In 2009, he received the gift of a lifetime: the heart of a young man and the friendship of that man's family. Little did he know, Nikolas' heart would be a perfect match.
"The gift I know Nikolas wanted me to give, it's a good thing, but I'm not going to lie. It wasn't the easiest thing I've ever done," said Missy Evans, Nikolas' mother.
Renaud has his fingers on the pulse of reality. The survival rate wasn't good but his family had already been through so much. The union of the two families beats on with every second. It was an instant connection formed out of Evan's incredible loss.
September 11th is one of those dates the families will always remember, like a wedding or Christmas.
"He already has a million dollar gift right here," said Eve Renaud.
Renaud wouldn't be here for this major milestone if not for a mother and her need to move forward from an incredible tragedy in her life.