Musician, Teacher, Liver Transplant Survivor

Meet Sung-Rai…

Violinist and now retired after 40 years as Professor of Music at Sarah Lawrence College, Sung-Rai Sohn was stricken with full-blown Hepatitis B in his early fifties. Unknown to him, the disease had been passed to him as a very young child and lay dormant for many years. Then, in 1998, it hit full force – and his normal life was over. A life full of teaching, performing, and family hung in the balance.

Sung-Rai was terminally ill. He lost weight. His skin took on a yellow cast. The Hepatitis had destroyed over 80 percent of his liver function, and that spawned a host of disorders. Constant pain fever,bleeding in his esophagus, agonizing cramps throughout his body. His wife, Patricia, herself a musician and teacher, was his main caregiver and patient advocate. Since 1998, he had experienced pain and suffering that few of the rest of us ever have. He had a living donor liver transplant in 2001 followed by an additional, tough double-bile duct surgery a year later. In 2014 he had a second transplant, this time from a deceased donor.

Sung-Rai has faced his medical challenges with courage and dignity. Along the way, he has become a tireless supporter of organ donation. In the last few years, he has been giving concerts for organ donation awareness, which he offers to groups and organizations and which includes a short film To Have & To Give, and which was produced by Sung-Rai’s living-donor - his brother-in-law, Dave Esposito. The film chronicles Sung-Rai’s first transplant and the profound effect this life-saving surgery had on him it had on his family. You can watch the film below…

For more information please contact Sung-Rai Sohn at sungrai@gmail.com or 914 843-6667.