Emily Progin, PR and Communications Coordinator
[email protected] / 800.642.8399
MAN SEEKING HELP LOST SISTER, MOTHER, AND CHILDREN’S MOTHER TO SAME DIAGNOSIS
“I Try Not to Show My Kids the Fear in Me”
RIVERSIDE, Calif.—For two decades, Kirt Mitchell has been fighting a demon: congestive heart failure. In 2020, he lost his sister, his mother, and the mother of his children to the same disease. Despite his losses, Kirt is fighting for hope: a life-saving heart transplant. He is fundraising with a national nonprofit to assist with the overwhelming out-of-pocket cost.
Kirt must receive a heart transplant to survive. At just 54 years old, he has already spent twenty years fighting heart disease, most recently with an LVAD (Left Ventricular Assist Device) and pacemaker.
“I live in a state of fear—a life full of stress, thinking that any moment could be my last,” Kirt explained. “It is always on my mind. Any dysfunction or equipment failure could end my life. I try not to show my kids the fear in me, but it takes all of my energy to do this.”
In 2020, Kirt lost his own mother, a sibling, and the mother of his children to heart failure. “My kids deal with stress,” he said. “They have not cried for their mother yet, because they think they need to be strong for me. I am trying to stay strong for them.”
The diagnosis has led to disconnection from his community, with which he once shared a close bond: “Since I became sick, I withdrew from my community, including my community service, coaching kids’ basketball and football, feeding homeless families, and fundraising with walks for cystic fibrosis and breast cancer,” said Kirt. Kirt’s wife is currently living with breast cancer.
“I had to stop these activities without warning,” he explained. “I was also at the height of my career as a manager.” Kirt spent 16 years working on Wall Street prior to relocating to Florida and working as a manager for more than a decade. He now lives in Riverside.
Kirt must raise $100,000 to financially prepare for the out-of-pocket costs of the heart transplant—a procedure which can easily surpass $1 million before insurance. He has partnered with the national medical fundraising nonprofit Help Hope Live to launch a secure, tax-deductible, and medically verified fundraising campaign at: https://helphopelive.org/campaign/17049/
After transplant, Kirt says he will be able to return to the activities that still bring him joy, including playing sports and spending time with his children and grandchildren. Once his gift of life is within reach, he says he is excited about getting the opportunity to pay it forward by lending a hand to other heart transplant patients in need.
Make a donation in honor of Kirt Mitchell at https://helphopelive.org/campaign/17049/ or by calling 800-642-8399. Donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law, and all funds raised will be managed by the nonprofit to cover verified medical and related expenses. Help Hope Live verifies medical and financial need for every patient.
Help Hope Live is a national nonprofit that specializes in engaging communities in secure, tax-deductible fundraising campaigns for people who need a transplant or are affected by a catastrophic injury or illness. Since 1983, campaigns organized by Help Hope Live have raised over $145 million to pay patient expenses. ###Written by Emily Progin