A 22-year-old nursing school graduate from Concord, New Hampshire, named Ryan Zwick is in critical condition and in need of a new heart after his own failed following a viral infection. Ryan, who is currently in the cardiovascular intensive care unit of a Las Vegas hospital, informed his doctors about his difficulty in breathing. According to his mother, Karen Zwick, they suspect that Ryan may have contracted COVID-19 around three weeks ago and is still experiencing lingering symptoms. After undergoing a five-hour open heart surgery, Ryan was placed on an ECMO machine, which assists in filtering and pumping blood through the body. In addition to this, he is also undergoing dialysis. Karen Zwick expressed her gratitude for the support she has received from her colleagues at Concord High School, where she teaches special education, stating that they have been her support system throughout this ordeal. Ryan’s doctors have informed the family that his best chance of survival is receiving a new heart. To support his medical expenses, family and friends have set up multiple donation sites.
Ryan’s passion for nursing stems from losing his sister four years ago, prompting him to become a caretaker. This experience has motivated Karen to fight for her son’s life, as she knows firsthand the pain of losing a child and is determined not to go through that again. She emphasizes the importance of having a strong support network and acknowledges the collective effort required to overcome such challenges. As the family continues to search for a suitable heart donor, they rely on the generosity of the community through the fundraising efforts organized by their loved ones.