LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) – Tony Forte was diagnosed at six days old with a rare disease that effects the digestive system.

He has never lived a normal life, but things are looking up after receiving a multi-organ transplant back in late August.

Forte says he is grateful for a chance at a normal life.

“I am thankful for a new life,” said Forte. “I am grateful for the new things that I can do, and I am thankful for the new organs that I have got.”

Tony received the organs after a 12-year-old boy died the day before he flew down to Miami for the transplant surgery. Tony says he does not know much about the boy.

“I know he was about my age,” said Forte. “I know we had the same blood type.”

Tony says that he will never drink or smoke when he gets older because he made a promise to take care of his new organs in honor of the boy who passed away.

Tony says this Thanksgiving will be much different compared to years past.

“I have no more food restrictions,” said Forte. “I am looking forward to turkey and mashed potatoes.”

Anyone interested in sending Tony their well wishes can mail cards to CB Smith Park & Campground, Site 44, 900 N. Flamingo Road, PemBroke Pines, FL, 33082.

Anyone who would like to make a donation to help Tony’s family with expenses should visit or send funds by mail at the Antonio Forte Transplant Fund Trust, 2131 Fruitville Pike, Lancaster, PA 17601.

WHTM is a KOIN affiliate.