“The future is wide open,” says Kyle Hardy, double-lung transplant survivor

Good Day Dakota

Back in July, KX News reported on a Rolla man who was anxiously awaiting a double-lung transplant to treat Cystic Fibrosis. He was on the double-lung transplant for about three months.

Kyle Hardy was already at the University of Minnesota Hospital for about a month when he got the call he’d been waiting for.

“Everybody asked me if I was nervous,” Hardy said. “I wasn’t nervous, I was more excited than anything.”

His lungs were functioning at just 13 percent. When we met in July, they were at 22 percent.

On September 4th, he was about to re-visit with his doctor when his phone rang.

“While I was in the elevator to go back up, the transplant people called me and asked if I wanted my new lungs,” he recalled.

The first thing he did was call his parents — a moment they’ll never forget.
Kyle’s dad John, said, “I was scared.”

The next morning, they arrived to await the 8-hour surgery.
“The doctor came in before the surgery and told us that not everybody survives this surgery,” John Hardy said. “So that was going through our minds, but at the same time, just realizing how much Kyle’s life was going to change that day got us through it.”

Kyle recuperated at a miraculous rate. He spent just two days in the ICU. Some transplant recipients are there for weeks.

With three months to recover in Minnesota, he hit milestones — literally.
“Six miles on the bike, two miles on the elliptical and two miles on the treadmill,” Kyle said proudly.

“If you would’ve asked me 4 or 3 months before that, to do even a mile on the treadmill, I would have laughed at you.”

Now, he’s home in Rolla staying busy, partially thanks to his new roommate, Rocco, a four-month-old Shepherd-Mastiff mix.
“A week after I got home I went down and picked him up.”

So what’s next for Kyle Hardy?
“The future is wide open, I guess,” he said.

“Did you think you’d ever be able to say that?”
“No, I didn’t. Actually, I hadn’t planned on it. but it’s nice to be able to now. I’m not going to be entering any bodybuilding contests or anything like that .. not yet anyway,” Kyle said with a laugh.

Kyle is able to go for lab work in his hometown that is sent to the University of Minnesota and he’ll be able to start pulmonary rehab there, too, after the new year.

He can’t get back to teaching until the fall but pays visits and has been able to help out with coaching wrestling already too.

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