MATTHEWS, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — As an accountant, Alan Greer is a professional problem-solver.
“I’m an analytical person,” Greer said, who works as corporate insurance director for Truist Bank in uptown Charlotte.
Outside of work, Greer faced a problem he couldn’t solve by himself, so he leaned on a fellow CPA — his wife, Amanda.
“We think on the same wavelength,” she said.
“We met in a tax class, a very romantic story, haha,” Alan said, who began dating Amanda when they were both students at the University of North Carolina.
Years after tying the knot and vowing to be there for each other in sickness and health, they hit hard times.
“Anyone who looked at him could see that he was sick, so that was difficult,” Amanda told Queen City News.
“My face was very gaunt,” said Alan, who in 2008 was diagnosed with a chronic liver disease that affects the organ’s bile ducts. “When your liver is damaged, it can’t use the food you’re eating.”
By last year, he was in dire need of a liver transplant. His weight and quality of life both dropped dramatically.
“So, we used social media and reached out to a broad audience to try to find a willing donor,” he explained.
But organ donation can be challenging. So, the Greers pondered their options.
“It’s hard to find a match,” Amanda said. “And it’s a big ask for a stranger or somebody that’s just an acquaintance to do that for somebody, and I told him I wanted to be evaluated.”
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center doctors determined she was a match for her husband.
“I felt like it was something I needed to do, that I wanted to do,” Amanda said.
April is National Donate Life Month. Of the more than 100,000 people on the national transplant waiting list, about 10,000 need a liver. The Greers are sharing their story to get the word out about living donor transplants as a promising alternative.
“It’s a second chance,” Alan said.
“And they took the right lobe of my liver, which was about 60 percent,” Amanda outlined, encouraging more folks to become living donors.
“Your liver will regenerate as mine has and will grow to full size in the recipient as well. So we want to get the word out that it’s possible and that it’s life-changing and bring hope.”
Her liver is at full function just four months after the procedure. When asked if he was indebted to her, Alan had a quick response.
“Before this and much more so after this!” he said.
Amanda’s organ donation was a lifesaver.
“I have my husband back. He was so ill in the months preceding that. He wouldn’t have survived without a transplant,” Amanda said.
Alan’s appetite for life and food is back. When Queen City News met them, the Greers made chicken fajitas in the kitchen.
“It didn’t take long until I was open to eat anything,” Alan said.
“I told him the other day it’s like going back five years to how we interact with each other and how we feel,” Amanda said.
Alan’s regained 50 pounds and counting, and the impact of their fresh start is even more than these CPAs could’ve accounted for. Now, they count on more quality time with family.
“She saved my life,” Alan said.
After all, they’ve been through; it’s pretty apparent they’re the perfect match in more ways than one.