Cloyd Powell was the picture of perfect health when he retired from the United States Army as master sergeant after 24 years. But after a routine physical exam, a cardiologist found Cloyd’s heart was twice the normal size and diagnosed him with cardiomyopathy.
Throughout the next several years, his condition deteriorated, despite temporary success of medications, a pacemaker and an investigational stem cell transplant. In 2009, during a family vacation, Cloyd was struggling hard to breathe, so he went to a hospital where the doctor told him he was a “dead man walking.”
Just a few days later with his family by his side, he was implanted with a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) at Methodist. “That LVAD device was the best thing that ever happened to me,” Cloyd said. His condition eventually required him to be listed as a priority for heart transplant, and he underwent a successful transplant on October 24, 2010.
Cloyd now enjoys spending time with his wife and two young children and volunteering his time to talk with other patients at Methodist who are faced with the need for LVADs or transplants. “I have so much support and am surrounded by people who treat me with courtesy, respect and genuine love,” he said.