Iowa family reunites with loved one’s heart recipient during Iowa girls state tournament

Published: Feb. 3, 2023 at 5:28 PM CST
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CORALVILLE, Iowa (KCRG) - After losing her brother Logan in an ATV accident in 2017, Lilly Luft of Charles City looked for a way to honor him and celebrate his memory. She chose wrestling. This week, Lilly and her family got to feel closer than ever to Logan as they welcomed Ember Henderson, the girl who received Logan’s heart.

Ever since Wendy Luft and Denise Henderson connected on social media, the two families have shared an unbreakable connection.

“When they found out Lilly was going to be wrestling for her final state title, they wanted to be a part of that,” said Wendy Luft. “So I got the phone call on Friday that said ‘Wendy, we’re headed to Iowa.’”

With the Henderson’s in Coralville to cheer Lilly on to a potential third title, the Lufts feel even closer to Logan this weekend.

“I’m happy being here. I’m happy that I get to see Lilly wrestle,” said Ember.

“Their family means the world to us. Logan is our hero, Logan saved her life, and Wendy and Lilly made the decision to allow that to happen,” said Ember’s dad, Daniel.

When Wendy Luft asked Ember how she feels about being in Iowa, she said she feels at home.

“I feel at home in Iowa because my heart donor lived here so it feels more like home than actual home,” said Ember.

While Wendy has always rest assured that Logan’s spirit is with her and her family, having Ember here means that much more.

“Tonight when we watch Lilly wrestle in her finals match, just to be together as a family, it will be all of us and Logan.”

With February being American Heart Month, both the Hendersons and Lufts are making it a point to encourage people to have conversations with loved ones on becoming a donor. Having those discussions ahead of time is what helped to save Ember’s life. For more information on becoming an organ donor, click here.