ByRosalyn Lim 林惠美, writer at Creators.co
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Rosalyn Lim 林惠美

I am not a trend follower, so naturally I do not write (or even mention) much on what's trending... but when I came across this news on CNN, I just couldn't help but share this heartwarming and true story to our movie-loving community!

Both cystic fibrosis patients met when they were 18.
Both cystic fibrosis patients met when they were 18.

Six years ago on Facebook, a girl with cystic fibrosis by the name of Katie Donovan, late night messaged a boy who was very sick. She told Dalton Prager, a stranger to Katie at the time who was also diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, to stay strong and then both of their lives were changed forever!

"If you ever need a friend to talk to, you can reach out to me!"
"If you ever need a friend to talk to, you can reach out to me!"

Once they realized that they were in love, they planned to meet but that was complicated and dangerous. Cystic fibrosis patients shouldn't have face-to-face meetings because they can share lung infections that would deteriorate their health... but Katie and Dalton met even though they might hurt their lungs.

Dangerously in love.
Dangerously in love.

Dalton had Burkholderia Cepacia Complex (BCC), a notoriously dangerous infection for cystic fibrosis patients, and it was one of the first things he told Katie. He left the decision on whether they should meet completely up to her. She told him that she would rather be, "Like really, really happy for five years of my life and die sooner than be mediocre and live for twenty years."

They finally met on August 28, 2009 but just one month after meeting, Dalton had passed the dangerous infection to Katie...

Katie and Dalton Prager.
Katie and Dalton Prager.

The love birds didn't stop there! Two years later they were married. Unfortunately, their collective health quickly deteriorated after their wedding and the new husband and wife went on oxygen full time. One year after that, Katie and Dalton were too sick to work... and both had to quit their jobs. Both sides of the couple now needed new lungs, along with facing many other obstacles together.

Dalton had his transplant first. Despite his infection, the transplant was a success.
Dalton had his transplant first. Despite his infection, the transplant was a success.

In August of 2014, both Katie and Dalton were admitted to University of Pittsburgh Medical Center to wait for new lungs. Dalton's came first and on November 17th, he had his transplant. Despite his BCC - which makes transplants more complicated - it was a success. Katie was so thrilled for him.

Katie was still waiting.
Katie was still waiting.

However, Katie was still waiting and her doctors predicted she wouldn't live a year without new lungs. Her husband also set up a Help Dalton and Katie Breathe campaign, but to no avail. Fortunately, five months after Dalton's, Katie found out that she was on her way to receiving a lifesaving lung transplant after CNN decided to lend them a helping hand!

Battling cystic fibrosis!
Battling cystic fibrosis!

Since they were discovered by CNN, Katie and Dalton Prager have been dubbed the 'Real Life Fault in Our Stars Couple' by the media. "Without CNN I don't think any of this would have been possible," Katie said in a statement Tuesday. "I am so thankful for all the support that Dalton and I have received from people all over the world. CNN will always hold a special place in my heart because they have ultimately played a huge part in saving my life."

The Pragers never give up!
The Pragers never give up!

Katie and Dalton Prager were reunited recently, but had been separated since November because he could not go into her room as Katie's infection could kill him. So close, yet so far. Dalton said, "It's hard not to run in and hug her, but Katie keeps saying, "Stay back!" Hang in there, Mr. Prager, it won't be long before you both can hold each other again! Best of luck for Katie's transplant!

Love and humanity restored...

I don't know if they will read this, but I want Katie and Dalton to know that they are amazing. They never give up - no matter what happens! I am truly happy for them, and we the Moviepilot community, certainly hopes the best for both of you! Stay strong, lovely and healthy forever!

Source: CNN 4/1, CNN 4/7

Rosalyn can be contacted via email and Facebook.
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