After the house fire in Woodbridge, Virginia, that left 50-year-old Imran Zaman with mostly third-degree burns over 90 percent of his body, he underwent 56 surgeries, spent two-and-a-half months in a coma, nearly died three times, and regained consciousness without the ability to talk or do much else. “I was basically reborn, just like an infant,” said Imran, now 54.
Imran recovered, thanks to doctors, rehab specialists, his own will and hard work, and skin grafts primarily from donated tissue. Now he honors the donors by dedicating his life to advocating for organ and tissue donation in the U.S. and overseas. “I feel like I have a lot to give to society now that I have what I call my second life. I go to churches, mosques, and other places, and I talk about how important donation is.”
“I use myself as an example by talking about the situation I was in and what I am today. It’s possible because I got somebody else’s tissue.
From within my heart, I thank whoever they were,” he added. “I also speak about how it’s possible to rise up from the dead. I want more donations so more people like me can get a new life.”