Ohio teen saved by heart transplant dies on first day of school

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GOSHEN, Ohio — As he prepared for his first day back to school — even posing for a photo on his front porch — there was no sign anything was wrong with 13-year-old Peyton West.

But less than an hour later,  the 13-year-old died after being taken to a hospital.

WCPO reports Peyton was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome and needed three open-heart surgeries before his fifth birthday.

His health took another turn in March and he had to have a heart transplant.

According to a Facebook page set up by his family, he had been doing well other than a few hospital visits and a brief scare when they thought his body was rejecting the new heart.

Thursday was the first day of the new school year. West’s father, Corey, said nothing seemed wrong as they got ready to leave home.

That changed during the car ride to his son’s school when Peyton told his father: “I don’t feel right. Something’s wrong.”

He was taken to a hospital and died.

“He was perfect last night,” Corey West told WCPO. “Perfect this morning. And then … it’s just precious. Life is precious.”

A prayer vigil was held in Peyton’s honor Thursday night. The superintendent of his school said he was “truly a joy to everyone’s path he crossed.”