Jordan Marcia has encountered many obstacles and challenges since receiving a heart transplant at three years of age, but that has not stopped him from living life to the fullest. When you meet Jordan, you’ll quickly realize his ability to dream big is only surpassed by his determination. Now 21 years post transplant, Jordan has recently left his home in Kelowna to embark on his latest goal: to be the first transplant recipient to travel to all 195 countries! So far, he’s had an excellent start with 12 countries crossed off the list. Most recent destination: Sri Lanka.
Jordan is not blasé about the challenges this adventure entails for a heart transplant patient. He is always very aware of his body, he has numerous safeguards in place and he practices great caution with what he eats. The 24-year old knows how lucky he is to be alive and acknowledges that heart transplant patients typically do not do very well in the long term. The average 10-year survival rate of heart transplant patients is around 60%. This is a statistic that haunted Jordan as a child but also allowed him to recognize the true value of life and motivated him to persevere. Now as an adult, he is always faced with the difficult question – just how long will his gifted heart keep going? It’s always on his mind but he continues to live life as large as he can. In addition to traveling the world, Jordan has climbed mountains, become a body builder and tried his hand at photography.
Jordan imagines a future where a patient’s own tissue and DNA can be used to make personalized organs. This intrepid adventurer hopes transplant research will make this a reality, changing the game for organ transplant recipients forever.
For now, he’s following his dreams and he’s hoping he’ll help inspire other transplant recipients to find their way, “You will have rough days, but always understand you are alive, against the odds. Get out and live. We don’t know how long we have.”
Follow Jordan’s adventures on Instagram @jordanmarcia
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