Local man in need of heart transplant

By Thomas Garcia, PNT Staff Reporter

A Portales native is being treated at a Texas hospital awaiting heart transplant.

Charles ‘Charlie’ Crane was admitted to the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston when doctors in Lubbock diagnosed him with a heart virus, said Charlie’s wife, Martha Crane.

“Charlie is out of the hospital and has been moved to a home near the University hospital and is in good spirits,” Crane said.

Even the doctors are unsure where the virus came from and they have sent samples across the world to try and determine its origins. The doctors have done everything that could be done and the only option left is a heart transplant, Crane said.

Crane first had symptoms of chest pain after returning from a Baptist rescue mission in Fernley, Nev. where a dam had broken. Doctors examined him and found no cause for the pain and he developed a cough with symptoms that resembled pneumonia, Crane said.

“Charlie was transferred from Portales to Lubbock with the thought that something may be wrong with his heart,” Crane said. “In Lubbock doctors found the remains of the virus and he was transported to Galveston.”

The doctors say there is an average of three months waiting time for a donor heart. During that time Charlie must be within a three-hour drive of the hospital. After the surgery he will have to remain within 30 minutes of the hospital for another three months, Crane said.

“We are leaving on Thursday to join Charlie in Galveston,” Crane said.

Trying to help his church members and friends, First Baptist Church pastor David McFadden, has started a donation account at Wells Fargo Bank in Portales.