Stem Cell Recipient Surprised by Secret Donor Visit on July 4th

Stem Cell Recipient Surprised by Secret Donor Visit on July 4th

A woman who received life-saving stem cells from a German stranger is surprised by a visit from his family to celebrate her birthday and July 4th.
Not long ago, Janie Savery faced a life-changing diagnosis.

"I had leukemia three years ago and had to have a stem cell transplant," she said.

There was a slim chance she would find a perfect match she needed to save her life. But halfway across the world, Janie found a donor. And on July 4, 2013, his family became part of hers.

"My donor is Hudy from Germany, and they've come to be my guests for my 50th birthday," Savery said, all smiles.

In a surprise plan, Hudy flew across Atlantic waters to the U.S. to surprise Janie for the Fourth of July and her birthday. Some of her family members were in on the secret, but she had no idea.

"Surprised I'm in shock," she laughed."I'm still in shock."

Janie speaks no German, and Hudy doesn't understand English. But there are moments in life that transcend translation.

"It's great to be here," Hudy's daughter told us. "Everyone is very friendly and lovely. It's a family for us."

And as we Americans celebrate the birth of our nation, it's a reminder for Janie of what freedom can mean.

"Yeah, it does -- I'm free to live again I'm blessed," she said.

After their visit to Greers Ferry Lake, the crew plans to road trip to New Orleans and Miami before Hudy's return flight to Germany.
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