On April 24, 1989, Bill was born with Hypoplastic Left Ventricle Syndrome, a congenital birth defect. That night, he was flown by helicopter to a hospital in Chicago, Illinois, where his family was told the only cure would be an infant heart transplant. It was also explained that Bill had twenty-one days left to live, for if the doctors waited any longer than twenty-one days, the rest of his organs would begin to fail.
In the final hours of Bill’s twenty-first day, the phone rang with a donor offer from Ontario, Canada. That night, on May 16, 1989, Bill became the fourth infant heart transplant to ever be performed in the Midwest and the eighth in the nation.
Years passed, and he never suffered any complications. That was until June 8, 2009, when at the age of twenty, Bill was rushed to the hospital where a team of doctors informed him that he was in both end-stage heart and kidney failure.
Bill later spent 70 days in the Intensive Care Unit of a Chicago hospital awaiting a double transplant and a second chance at life. Fortunately, and thanks to the generosity and selflessness of Bill’s second donor, his life was saved on October 21, 2009.
Since returning home from the hospital in 2009, Bill has become an avid spokesperson for organ donation, as well as a motivational speaker. Bill also provides hope for his readers via email through his website, BillCoonBooks.com.
Bill’s personal experience and ability to overcome obstacles has enabled him to share remarks before the American Society for Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics, The American Heart Association, and many other well-respected organizations.