Magnolia Robel was born with four different congenital heart defects, two of which needed immediate surgical intervention. As part of her treatment, she received a cadaveric tissue graft and both red cell and platelet transfusions. Magnolia’s father Pete, a Versiti apheresis coordinator, remembers seeing the Versiti bags on her IV pole and was reminded of the important work Versiti does every day.
“While visiting her in the hospital, I often thought about the journey those little cells made,” he says. “Did they come from a retiree or a nurse after a long shift, or a teenager at a high school mobile drive donating for the first time? All the familiar faces I see every day at work, just doing their jobs, don’t know that they could have helped save my daughter’s life.”
After two months at Children’s Wisconsin, Magnolia was able to come home. “Today, she’s doing great thanks to the selfless contributions of strangers,” Pete says. “Every time I see her scars and the shadow of her pacemaker, I’m reminded how many people needed to contribute to keep her new little life going. It took an enormous team of doctors and nurses, family and friends, understanding coworkers, our organization, and, of course, the same donors we all serve on a daily basis. I can’t thank any of them enough.”