Niagara Gazette — He also expressed his appreciation of family, neighbors and friends, the people who mowed his lawn and offered support to the family.
“I believe in the prayers we were given,” Cathie said. “We’re so thankful for all the support from families.”
“Something came through at the end for me,” Tim said. “Guardian angels are looking after me.”
Then there is the recovery. As the foot-long scar on his chest will attest for the rest of his life, Synor’s story is not over.
“The doctors are impressed” with his progress, he said, “exactly what they want to see.”
His regular visits back to Rochester are now a standard part of his life, as are 20 pills a day, down from 36, of “low-dose anti-rejection” medication.
Statistics back up his progress. His “ejection fraction,” the volume of blood pumped from the left ventricle, is now at 70 percent, he says. Normal is 55 percent; his was formerly 7 percent.
A keepsake of his experience is a heart-shaped pillow, now on his living room couch, sewn by hospital volunteers. It looks more like a Valentine gift than a therapeutic tool, but it gave him something to hold while sitting in the preferred arms-crossed position in the hospital.
As could be expected, Tim has become an advocate for organ donation.
“Register to become an organ donor. Save a precious life,” he implores, acknowledging some people find it harder than others to agree to the after-death surrender of hearts, lungs and the like, and therein lays a story.
While Tim was in Rochester, the Rochester Americans hockey club presented a night of organ donor awareness, featuring former Buffalo Sabres player Gaetano “Gates” Orlando, who now lives with an artificial heart. Many fans signed up; others, Tim says, seemed repelled by the whole idea.