Zerr baby surprises doctors after transplant, could be home soon
Randy Zerr thinks his 11-month-old son has a surprise in store for his twin sister, Morgan.
"I can't wait to see her eyes when he steals her toy," Randy said. "She's always been the aggressive one. He didn't have the energy to stop her. He's much more energetic now."
Randy can entertain such thoughts because Tanner has made excellent progress after a Feb. 28 liver transplant at a St. Louis hospital. Randy said his son's progress has been good enough that it is now hoped the youngster can return from St. Louis where the twin's mother Stacy Zerr remains with the baby in a rented apartment about 35 minutes from the hospital.
"Looking at it right now, if his numbers stay the same and he doesn't become ill, we hopefully will be home at the end of the month," Randy said. "I think he was ready to get out of the hospital and come home. Home home, not just out of the hospital, but to De Soto."
Randy, who returned from St. Louis last week, said his mother was also a resident of the apartment. Lorretta Zerr of Colby donated about a quarter of her liver to Tanner when doctors decided to move up the transplant schedule, eliminating the possibility of securing an organ transplant from a cadaver.
The liver transplant was the end of an 11-month ordeal for the Zerrs, that saw the twins born three months prematurely, Stacy's parents severely injured in an automobile accident when returning home after visiting the newly born twins in the hospital, and Tanner's subsequent diagnosis with a rare liver disease unrelated to his premature birth.
His mother was still dealing with the effects of her surgery but could return to Colby, Randy said. She is staying in St. Louis to help Stacy and her "liver buddy," Randy said.
"She's doing fine," he said. "She's still a little sore.
"I went to her room after the surgery to ask how she felt. She asked how Tanner was doing. She said, 'Well, I'm in pain, but it's a good pain.'"
Tanner is transforming since the surgery, Randy said. He is putting on weight and has lost his yellow shade from his pre-transplant days and was now pale, his father said.
"That's good," the father said. "He's eating upward to 30 ounces of formula a day and also eating baby food. Stacy says he's getting a double chin."
Contributions to a trust fund established for Tanner Zerr can be made to:
American Liver Foundation, Transplant Trust Fund, 1425 Pompton Ave., Cedar Grove, NJ 07009.
Checks with Tanner Zerr's name on the memo line will be deposited in his account