Donor Spotlight: The Barbours

The Barbours


After years of declining health from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Richard Barbour underwent a double lung transplant at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.


A dramatic improvement in health following the transplant was remarkable to witness, recalls his wife, Elizabeth “Betsy” Barbour. 


“I can’t imagine anything that I’ll ever see in my lifetime that would be more amazing than that,” said Betsy. 


Richard lived five and one-half years after his transplant. He died at age 53. But Betsy doesn’t see his death as a failure. Instead, his transplant allowed him to live life to the fullest. 


After the procedure, Richard became passionate about helping others needing transplants, and his family intends to keep that support going. 


Through annual payments and designating the Medical Center to receive her life insurance, Betsy, with her family, was able to create an endowment in Richard’s name that will support the assistance fund and lung disease research. 


“I doubt that Richard would have guessed that giving to Vanderbilt on this level could be an option for us. I know he would be extremely gratified that his desire to give back can live on after him,” said Betsy.


"I know that Richard’s transplant will always be the greatest miracle I’ve ever witnessed. And knowing that his endowment will continue to grow and help others is a great comfort to our family." — Betsy Barbour, Richard’s wife


Betsy Barbour


To read more about the Barbours and their story, click here.