Ohio teen who received heart transplant dies on first day of school
A 13-year-old Ohio boy who was born with half a heart tragically collapsed and died on his first day of school, just hours after smiling for a photo on his front porch.
Peyton West was born with a congenital heart disease called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, which means the left side of his heart did not form correctly during pregnancy.
Due to his condition, West needed three open-heart surgeries before he was even 5 years old and, after his health suddenly took a sharp turn for the worse March 2017, he received a full heart transplant.
Since then, his family had chronicled the young boy's journey on the Facebook page Pray for Peyton, sharing updates about hospital visits, medication management and a brief scare in which they feared his body had rejected the donated heart.
Peyton's father, Corey West, told WESW-TV that nothing seemed out of the ordinary on Thursday morning, when his son woke up at 6:30 a.m. to prepare for his first day of classes -- until they began the drive to school.
"I don't feel right," West told his father during the car ride. "Something's wrong."
According to WESW-TV, West was rushed to Children's Hospital that morning, where he died shortly thereafter.
"He was perfect last night," Corey West said. "Perfect this morning. And then…it's just precious. Life is precious."
West's family took to their Facebook page on August 17 to share with the community that their son had died.
"Peyton passed away this morning at 10:45am," they wrote. "We will post more when we know."