MIAMI, OK.--- It's a matter of life and death for a Miami woman--- getting her name on an organ transplant list. Cindy Cundiff-Martin's family needs to raise $30,000. As you can imagine, it isn't an easy task. So, the family is turning to the community for help.
"Right now, she is actually hospitalized at St.John's in Tulsa," said Tera Martin, Cindy's Daughter.
Spending her 54th birthday in a hospital bed.
"I thought it was pretty awful," said Martin.
Cindy Cundiff Martin was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD in 2009. Since then, she's been in and out of hospitals.
"She's unable to work, she's on oxygen all the time," said Martin.
Even things many take for granted are difficult, like spending time with her grandchildren, all 15 of them.
"Simple things such as trick or treating this past night, she would've wanted to be there," said Martin.
A lung transplant is Cindy's only hope.
"If she gets to the point she has to be on ventilation, the transplant is a no-go, they won't do it," said Martin.
"It's life saving, that's bottom line- if she doesn't get the transplant, her life expectancy goes way down," said Nick Turley, Cindy's Son.
The total cost is $450,000 with an initial cost of $30,000 to get her name on a waiting list for a new lung. The $30,000 cost to get her on the list is not covered by insurance and only a portion of the total is covered. The National Foundation for Transplants told the family fundraising was their best bet.
"Fundraisers cover medical expenses, but it also covers medications before and after. And all of the medication afterward is necessary if she doesn't come up with the money for a medication, it's life ending," said Turley.
The first fundraiser is tomorrow ----a softball tournament. Cindy's five kids hope to raise up to $1,500 from that event, inching them closer to getting on the transplant list.
"Her doctor out of Oklahoma City is pushing for this spring, as early as this spring to get her on the list," said Turley.
All money raised through fundraisers will go directly to the National Foundation for Transplants, which will then be disbursed into Cindy's account. If she can't get the transplant, that money will be given to other patients in need. The first fundraiser is tomorrow at noon. It's a softball tournament starting at noon at the Miami fields across from the fairgrounds. Teams can sign up up until the start of the event, the entry fee is $125. For more information, you can call Nick Turley at 918-541-7831 and to make a donation, click here.
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