At just 21-years-old Andy Sandness had given up and tried to take his own life with a rifle. Sandness survived the attempt but lost more than half his face to the gun blast.
Sandness has spent the last 10 years finding a new appreciation for life as he searched for a tissue donor and a sympathetic doctor willing to help him.
At age 31 Sandness became the recipient of what may are calling the most successful face transplant in history.
The surgery was conducted at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota earlier this year. As the bandages came off Sandness commented on his new appearance saying the procedure “far exceeded my expectations”.
“I don’t think there’s anybody who doesn’t deserve a second chance. It’s just a matter of whether you feel the patient has reached a point where they realize they have made a mistake,” said Dr. Samir Mardini.
The donor’s face originally belonged to Calen Ross, a 21-year-old expecting father who took his own life last summer.
After more than 8 surgeries required to reconstruct the muscles and bone of his jaw, Sandness was finally given that second chance.
Learn more about his unbelievable story in the video below.
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