By Natasha Clark
Assistant Managing Editor
Pauline Beaulieu wants to thank you. Yes, you. Thanks to caring readers, Don Chretien of Springfield was able to afford to continue to live next to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla. Three days before Thanksgiving he became the recipient of a new liver.
Chretien and his wife Phyllis were forced to leave behind everything, including their home, to travel to Florida to be added to the liver transplant waiting list at Mayo. Since it is unpredictable when a liver will be available, the Chretiens had to live in close proximity. That meant double the financial woes since they had to maintain a residence down there as well as their home here in Springfield.
Friends such as Beaulieu came to their aid, organizing a fundraiser which was captured in an August 2008 article in The Reminder.
"The donations came in all the way up to $1,000," Beaulieu told Reminder Publications. "Phyllis said she could not get over how many people responded."
Chretien is doing well, though he isn't out of the woods as of yet.
"There are no complications up to this point. He is not out of danger as they alter medication and things of that nature," Beaulieu said. "His body has to adapt to it."
Beaulieu added that she wanted to thank everyone for their generosity.
"I just want to say thank you to everyone," she said. "It doesn't matter what they gave. I don't care if it was five dollars or a thousand dollars. He got his transplant and they are the reason. If people didn't help he would have had to come home."
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