Newport News mom meets son’s double lung recipient

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. - Susan Hanson and Douglas Conrad had a bittersweet greeting at the Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg Sunday.

“You’re gonna make me cry,” Conrad said as the two hugged.

That’s because Hanson’s son, 33-year-old Jordan Gill, who died in an ATV accident nearly two years ago, saved Conrad’s life.

The father of two was an organ donor.

“I had pulmonary fibrosis. Her son gave me a new life by giving me his lungs when he passed away, which I’m sorry for,” Conrad explained.

Conrad and his family traveled from Kentucky this weekend to meet Hanson and Gill's sister.

“It is so wonderful that someone would do that for me,’ Conrad said.

Sunday was especially emotional for Hanson because she got to listen to Gill’s lungs for the first time since his death.

“They’re still breathing," Hanson said.

"Yes, they are," Conrad replied.

Hanson cried for a moment after listening to them through a stethoscope.

“It almost seems surreal to think that my son - he now gave extended life to another person. That makes me emotional in a happy way,” Hanson told News 3.

Douglas isn’t the only person to receive her son’s organs.

Hanson told News 3 Conrad is just one of five people getting a second chance at life.

“By meeting these organ recipients and seeing how they’re lives have changed and their health has improved and all that – that has brought us great joy,” Hanson said.

A joy that Hanson said has helped her family deal with their grief.

She said knowing Jordan is able to still make a difference assures her that everything will be alright.

“Even though my son is no longer with us – we know he’s watching over us,” said Hanson.