Man runs Thanksgiving 5K months after heart transplant

Scott Kovacs blows a kiss to his wife after finishing the Turkey Trot 5K. (Nov. 24, 2016)
Scott Kovacs blows a kiss to his wife after finishing the Turkey Trot 5K. (Nov. 24, 2016)


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) –- After undergoing a heart transplant followed by months of training, Scott Kovacs achieved his goal by crossing the finish line of the Turkey Trot 5K.

“I didn’t think I would be running this race a couple months ago,” Kovacs said after the Thanksgiving Day race.

Kovacs had a heart transplant in March, but he battled heart issues for more than 10 years. Five months after the major surgery he began using the Couch to 5K app which led him to be one of more than 3,200 people who took part in the annual Turkey Trot 5K.

“My goal today was just to finish and I was able to do that,” he said.

Family members were lined up with encouraging signs of support.

Although the physical exhaustion on his face was evident as Kovacs reached the finish line, it quickly transformed into determination.

His wife, Shannon, was visibly emotional as she watched her husband finish the last stretch of the race and then blow her a kiss.

“He’s just nothing more than a miracle,” said his excited wife. “Nothing has ever stopped this man once he puts his mind to something.”

His family is giving thanks on this holiday and shared advice to families who may be in a position they are all too familiar with.

“Just keep a positive attitude,” Shannon said. “Scott never said ‘why me’ he never said ‘why me?’”

Scott plans to run a 10K this spring.