Transplant candidate hoping to speed to a recovery

By Chad Weber

August 16, 2013 Updated Aug 16, 2013 at 10:20 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- For one Peoria woman, the wait for an organ transplant list could soon turn into a race against time.

Cynthia Holmes was diagnosed with COPD and emphysema in 2005.

Now after two years of work to get on the lung transplant list, she will be eligible in another two weeks.

However, once that call comes for Holmes, she will have just three hours to drive to Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis or the organ will go to someone else.

Thursday night the Holmes family held a fundraiser at Culver's to help raise money for the four month recovery stay that would follow the surgery.

"We think about it on a daily basis," said Hailey Holmes, Cynthia's daughter and the designated driver to St. Louis. "We got to get all of our stuff packed up and leave it in the car and just be ready to go."

"Maybe it is going to be a possibility," said Cynthia Holmes. "I really will get some new lungs, and maybe I'll get to watch my kids grow up."

Thursday night's fundraiser included raffle baskets and gift cards donated from local businesses. Ten percent of the restaurant's profits were also donated to the family.

The family was hoping to raise around $1,000 dollars out of their $25,000 dollar goal.

Donations can still be made at South Side Bank under the Cynthia Holmes Benefit fund or online at

Click "Find an NFT Patient" to search for Cynthia Holmes.

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