RED LION, YORK COUNTY, Pa. - Most people live life not knowing when it will end. For others, like Ray Geesey, they know times is short but still hold out hope for a miracle for someone to save them before it's too late.
"I always told my students to not give up," said Geesey. "And I'm not going to."
Geesey, 63, has Cirrhosis of the liver. He believes it's genetic, as his brother died from the disease. In December 2017, Geesey was told the only chance he has to live is to get a new liver. Even though his health has deteriorated, right now he's too healthy to be at the top of an organ transplant list.
His only option is to find a donor, whether that person is sick and not going to survive and can donate their liver once they've passed, or they're healthy and willing to make the sacrifice to give Geesey part of their liver.
"I'm not looking for sorrow or pity," said Geesey. "If somebody out there has the opportunity to help save my life great, and if not it's okay."
Although Geesey has been sick for a somewhat short period of time, the journey has been an uphill battle. March 21st, the Geesey's got a call they'd been so desperately waiting for. There was someone willing to give Geesey their liver, as they were dying. In 15 inches of snow, Geesey and his wife Kathy made the drive to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore.
"Everybody's upbeat, everyone's excited, this is gonna be a perfect match," said Geesey. "We're gonna have this done and you're gonna start a new life."
That hope quickly diminished. The liver Geesey was set to receive did not survive.
"I said, 'What do we do now? They said go home,'" said Geesey.
Back to square one, Kathy, Ray's wife, decided to let people know what Geesey was going through in a Facebook post. The post received hundreds of comments of people letting Geesey know the impact he had on their lives. Having been a teacher at Dallastown and a coach for decades, Geesey had dedicated himself to helping kids. If by some miracle Geesey receives a liver, he's certain he will get back to helping kids.
"It's me trying to become me again, and me trying to help people," said Geesey. "I''m not afraid to die, I'm really not but if somebody's going to give me a chance I am certainly going to give it back to as many people as many times over."
Gessey has blood type A positive. If you or someone you know is interested in helping Geesey, contact Johns Hopkins Transplant Center. More information can be found here.