|By Michele Newbanks, Staff Writer|
The Parkersburg News January 25, 2001
Two days after Rayanna Lancaster lost her struggle to survive, her
family and friends
are trying to come to grips with their loss.
"We've been best friends since we were 7 years old," Angie Hersman
didn't want any attention toward her, even after the transplant. She
strong-willed and determined and a fighter. She was just a good
person. It's just not
Lancaster's health problems started in the fall of 1997. She found she
primary pulmonary hypertension, a disorder in which the blood pressure
in the lung
arteries is abnormally high. The right side of the heart becomes
enlarged due to the
increased work load of pumping blood against this resistance.
She had a double lung transplant on June 13, 2000. For three months
transplant, doctors gave her antibiotics to combat a possible
cytomegolovirus (CMV) that the donor might have.
A month after she quit taking antibiotics, she found out she had CMV
virus. The virus
can be controlled, but not cured. At one time she had the virus
knocked down, but a
week later, it came back.
The virus produces few symptoms. including a mononucleosis-like
fever. Pneumonia is a common by-product of the disease.
"She got pneumonia and she got better," Hersman said. "The final
thing. there was so
much scar tissue that there wasn't enough oxygen that came through the
went on October 17 to Cleveland Clinic and never returned."
Lancaster was a 1991 graduate of Calhoun High School, where she was
active in a lot
of school activities. She and her husband Chad were high school
graduated from Glenville State College in 1995 with a bachelor's
degree in education.
She was a pre-school teacher and coordinator at Family Development of
Head Start in
She was a member of Pleasant Hill Church and had been attending the
Community Church. - Parkersburg News
EDITORS NOTE: The benefit for Rayanna at Pleasant Hill UM Church this
been postponed. Her obituary appears elsewhere in The Herald.