Bloomington mother of 5 undergoes 2nd heart transplant surgery in 17 years, days before her 26th birthday

For the second time, a Bloomington woman is getting a new heart and another chance at life. This time tho, she knows this heart was a gift from above.
Published: May. 30, 2023 at 6:14 PM CDT
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(25News Now) - “I just have some jitters and some nerves but I’m just excited and I know my dad is going to be with me the whole time.”

Days before her 26th birthday, Mikahla Montgomery was just told she was getting a new heart.

Born with a heart condition, she received her first transplant as a kid, “I was born with a heart defect called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and when I was 9. I got my first heart transplant, and I did good for a really long time. About six months ago my heart started to give out and weaken and I had what’s called coronary heart disease.”

As a stepmother to five teens, she tells us she’s grateful her donor is allowing her an opportunity to have a future with them.

Mikahla says her kids “were worried they would never see me again and now I’m going to be here for the next couple of years and see them grow up and graduate.”

Now she says, she’s thankful she has a praying grandmother whose son, her father is guiding her every step of the way because he understands this experience firsthand.

Her mother Wendy Montgomery, explains, “I don’t want to cry because it’s been a struggle because when she was young, she didn’t know what was going on and just went with the flow. This time it’s a lot harder because she doesn’t have her dad here and she had a tremendous loss last year. Her dad actually passed away from the same heart condition that caused her to need her first heart transplant, so it’s been an emotional roller coaster and she’s staying pretty strong.”

Mikahla finishes with, “knowing that my dad is up there working his magic with them, that keeps us grounded. My grandma’s prayers, her words, the way she talks, the way she prays, it brings so much comfort to us. I know that she believes with her whole heart as we all do. That helps us get through the day, she’s definitely the backbone of the family, we wouldn’t be able to do this without her.”

Due to the costs of driving back and forth to Chicago, for the next year and the medical bills she’s going to encounter, Mikahla’s mother, Wendy, is trying to raise $25,000 through their GoFundMe page.

She went into surgery at 2pm Tuesday afternoon and is expected to be in there at least until late Tuesday night, then she’ll remain asleep for the next couple of days as doctors monitor her body’s response to the new heart.