Ashley Hartley, of Gibson County, says it's an event for people who have donated or received a transplant.
Hartley says she's been participating in the event since she was four. She has been gearing up for this year's games like cornhole, bowling, and darts. Hartley worries all of her practice might not be worth it, if she can't afford to go.
"They only gave me six years to live, and it's been twenty-three now."
Twenty-four year old Ashley Hartley says she's practicing for an event that's close to her heart.
Hartley is gearing up for the Transplant Games of America, an event held for people who have donated or received a transplant.
Her medals are an accomplishment to her, but to others, it's the obstacles she's overcome that are the real triumph.
Hartley says she's undergone a kidney transplant, a heart transplant, and more than one-hundred surgeries after being born with five birth defects.
"I have my ups and downs and stuff. There are days I don't want to do anything, and there are days that I just want to go home and do everything," says Hartley. Hartley says getting to participate in the games is one event that brings her back to life. This year the games will be held in Houston, Texas.
Hartley says each participant is asked to raise, if they can, around 2500 hundred dollars. Hartley says she's falling short of that amount.
"If if wasn't for the heart donor, I wouldn't be here today. I'm so blessed for that," says Hartley.
Hartley says attending the games are a way to remember where she's been, and to look forward to where she is going.
"Just meeting new people with transplants, different people from different states, learning about their stories, and how they went through everything," says Hartley.
The games will be held July 11th-16th. Hartley is selling T-shirts for $20 dollars each to raise funds.
If you would like to help Hartley go to her website: http://www.gofundme.com/6J34F8
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