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In 2017, 20-year-old Cody was involved in a serious car accident that left him on life support after passing his driver's test a few months prior. The family made the difficult decision to remove their son from life support after he was declared brain dead. While Cody's life was tragically cut short, he still managed to save the life of another person.

Gene Shimandle had been on the heart transplant list for 12 years since he was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure in 2005. After more than a decade of severe health problems and artificial hearts, Gene finally had a healthy heart thanks to Cody being an organ donor. Gene and Cody's family met months after the successful surgery at a 5K Gene was participating in. That's where Cody's parents got to hear their son's heart beating for the first time since he passed away.

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