Lung and Heart Donor
Andy Koehle joined the Air Force in 2002 out of a sense of duty, and a desire to help others. He did that while traveling the world, including a deployment to Iraq. Even after he tragically passed away in early 2017, Andy continued to help others as an organ donor.
“We tried to make sense of this tragedy and part of that was donating his organs to ensure he lived on somehow,” Bill Koehle said. “You try to make some meaning out of a life, and this was an opportunity.”
A 35-year-old man with cystic fibrosis received Andy’s lungs, and a 38-year-old husband and father of three children under five, who was also grieving the recent loss of his own 10-year-old child in a tragic accident, was saved by Andy’s heart.
A 59-year-old Navy veteran who works as a cross-country truck driver received Andy’s liver. A 71-year-old Air Force veteran who received Andy’s kidney now spends his time volunteering and with his four children and eight grandchildren. A 71-year-old Army veteran who received Andy’s other kidney had been on dialysis for three years.
Bill and Pat Koehle want their son’s story to offer direction for others and encourage others to register for organ donation. “It was reassuring and somehow comforting that after he died to know part of him went on to stay,” she said. “It was something I could then say out loud to myself. I hate the fact Andrew’s dead, but it’s so gratifying to know he could help other people.”
An organ donor’s story goes on and on. So can yours. Register today to change lives tomorrow.