Starr Cookman (L) and Kylee Moreland Fenton (R) have been best friends for more than 30 years. They met in elementary school in Tuscon, Arizona.
They came to StoryCorps to talk about the start of their bond. Starr begins the conversation.
Click here for the transcript.
Kylee Moreland Fenton (KMF): You said to me that, "People move places and change careers all the time for our spouses. Why can't we do that for our friendship?" That was a pretty tall order for a couple of thirteen-year-olds.
SC: And here we are. We're living right down the street from each other. And you were there during the delivery of my first child.
I remember, we bring home Rowan from the hospital. And then, I notice that he had been spitting up his feedings.
KMF: I remember just watching him breathe. He was breathing so fast, and I remember feeling very alarmed.
SC: So I called the pediatrician, and um, the doctor took his pulses, and they seemed okay. And of course, me wanting it to be all okay, i was like, You know, he's fine.
KMF: Then I said, "I'm concerned. Why would he just for no reason be breathing a hundred times a minute?"
SC: And so then, the doctors says, "They're going to think I'm crazy at Children's Hospital, but I really think that you guys should go there and get a chest X-ray." So we went together.
KMF: And the attending came in--he listened to his heart with his stethoscope. And he listened, and he listened. And then he got up and he shut the door and he came back and he listened some more.
SC: And then he looks at me and says, "Rowan has something wrong with his heart. I think we're going to need to admit him and do surgery as soon as possible." At that moment, you knew instinctively what to do. And I remember, like, looking at you and thinking, Wow, we really are two sides of the same heart. Boy, if we ever wondered why we were given this friendship.
KMF: I don't think a day goes by that I don't look at that beautiful six-year-old with that scar on his chest and think how lucky we are to have him.