Newman community shows it has plenty of ‘heart’ for student golfer Jeremy Gant
When Newman University student golfer Jeremy Gant learned that he had a life-threatening condition that required a heart transplant, the Newman community showed its heart for Gant and his family with fundraisers, social events and plenty of emotional support.
Gant, an award-winning body builder and Dean’s List student, learned in his sophomore year that he had a faulty valve in his heart that could not be repaired. Gant, who was 19 at the time, was told by doctors that his heart was functioning at only 10 percent capacity; without a transplant he would likely die within a year.
While Gant and his family prepared for a possible transplant, the Newman community and residents of his hometown of Chanute, Kan., went to work. Newman students launched a “Support Jeremy Gant” Facebook page and helped organize a golf tournament to solicit support and funds for Gant’s family, The Bank of Commerce in Chanute established a support account for the Gant family, The Chanute Tribune ran stories on Gant and helped gather funds, and several grass-roots groups organized social events and auctions and sold bracelets, T-shirts, and other items.
After only 28 days on a waiting list, a donor heart was found for Gant, and he underwent the surgery in October 2010. Gant has fully recovered from the surgery and is now a senior at Newman.
Gant was recently featured on the NCAA online program “On Campus,” which highlights personal stories of student-athletes across the nation. The NCAA video chronicles Gant’s physical, emotional and spiritual journey through the process.
See the video, which includes an introduction by Newman women’s golfer and sports communication major Kendall Anderson.