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Mother hears dead son's heartbeat inside chest of donor recipient


BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — Emma Saldgado was born August 14, 2014. That same day doctors detected a heart murmur. Emma needed a new heart.

After some time in the hospital and a couple months on the transplant waiting list, Emma’s parents got great news.

“The doctor came rushing into our room and he said, ‘we got the call’,” said Gemma Saldgado, Emma’s mother.

A new heart was on the way. Emma’s surgery was scheduled for the next day.

Unfortunately, that new heart came at the expense of someone losing their life.

The new heart was coming from Arizona where 14-month-old Carter Lott had drowned. The young boy was in a coma which doctors said he wouldn’t wake up from.

When she got the news that her son would never wake up Kristi Lott made a choice. She made her son a donor.

“It was extremely difficult, but you know, the fact is I wanted him to help someone else.”

Friday Kristi got to meet Emma and Gemma for the first time, more than 2 years after the passing of her son.

Gemma was grateful for the opportunity.


“Because of her, I get to hg my daughter every day. I get to see her grow up and be a healthy child,” said Gemma. “None of that would’ve been possible without her.”

The meeting peaked when after seeing photos of Carter, the boys who gave Emma his heart, the young girl walked over to Krisit and pointed to her own chest.

“Can you listen?” the toddler asked.

Kristi put her ear to the girl’s chest and listened to heart dead son’s heartbeat inside the young girl whose life he saved.

It was an overwhelming moment.

“It’s something I never thought I’d get to be able to hear again and so I’m extremely grateful,” said Kristi.

The two families are now encouraging others to become donors, so sad events like Carter’s death can save lives like Emma’s.

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