Calif. woman travels to Phoenix to thank family of liver donor

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- A Valley family’s tragedy led to a California woman’s second chance at life.  Two years after she received a liver transplant, she traveled to Phoenix to say thank you.

“It’s a miracle,” Lucie Mewes said while hugging the Nava family for the first time. “I’m so grateful you wanted to meet me because so many families don’t connect.”

25-year-old Alvaro Nava, a Phoenix DJ, died in 2011, and his family made the decision to donate his organs. They say they take comfort in knowing his life has helped others.

“It’s a miracle, to have my son here with us” Rosa Maria Nava in Spanish. 

“We’ve been waiting for this for a long time,” she said. “We wanted to see the people who actually received the organs.”

“So many mixed emotions,” said Fernando Nava, one of Alvaro’s older brothers. “My baby brother gave to many people the greatest gift that any human being can receive.”

Lucie Mewes doesn’t take the gift for granted. She battled liver cancer and hepatitis C, which she contracted after a blood transfusion.

She said she spent about 18 months on the waiting list for a liver.

“People are dying because they don’t get them,” Mewes told 3TV.

Ironically, she was planning a trip to Phoenix for Spring Training, a trip she hoped to make before dying, when she got the call that saved her life.

“It’s just miraculous,” she said.

Mewes said while she’s filled with sorrow over Nava’s loss of life, she will always be grateful to his family for their choice to give.

“In a way it’s dream come true to actually meet them,” said Mewes.

The Donor Network of Arizona says there are currently over 2,300 on the waiting list statewide.

For more information on donations visit