Two families brought together through Gift of Life Donor Program

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Two families brought together through Gift of Life Donor Program - Ali Gorman reports during Action News at 5pm on April 6, 2018. (WPVI)

A chance meeting at the local Gift of Life race has brought two families together physically. But emotionally, they were already connected.

It's an incredible story about two boys and their families. One is now a teenager and is living with a hero's heart.

Noah Lamey, 13, loves basketball and really - all sports.

"I just like being a part of a team and running around," he said.

But four years ago, Noah could hardly breathe. His parents say he was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy. He'd been waiting for a heart transplant for 6 months.

Meanwhile across town, another family was also struggling. Markita Lewis's son Marquis, who was 13 at the time, had suffered a fatal asthma attack. Markita decided to donate his heart, liver and kidneys.

"He was very caring, very caring to everybody. I knew if I left this hospital not doing something, I was not going to be good and I'm telling you, I can smile every day because of organ donation, knowing my son is a hero," she said.

Noah is now able to do everything he wants thanks to Marquis's heart.

Through the Gift of Life, the families started writing letters per protocol, they couldn't share many details - only first names. Then came the Donor Dash.

Markita's team was wearing matching shirts.

"It says my name is Marquis Wood. I saved three lives," she said.

"I saw it and I said I don't know if I can pass up this opportunity," said Noah's dad, Rob Lamey.

That was Markita's cousins, then he found Markita.

"He said 'I'm Noah's dad' and I just immediately hugged him," she recalled.

Then she met Noah, and his mom, Susan Lamey.

"We hugged for probably a good 5 straight minutes and didn't say anything," said Susan.

"It was amazing knowing a year has gone by and this young man has just run a 5k with my son's heart and I don't think Marquis every ran a 1k, let alone a 5k," said Markita.

And this year for the Donor Dash, the families are combining their teams into one big team called Team M and N for Marquis and Noah.

The Dash is next Sunday, April 15th and they have several distances and a fun walk.

For more information on the Donor Dash:

http://events.donors1.org/site/TR?fr_id=1131&pg=entry

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