Ryan’s Heart: A Special Series on NJ Today with Online Q&A

This Week on NJ Today, a three-part special series that hits close to our Montclair State University home….
and an opportunity to find out more from Ryan Miller

(L-R) Danielle Miller, Steve Tucker, Ryan Miller, Dawna Tucker and Rich Miller meet and share their perspectives in Ryan's Heart, a special three-part series about a local college student's heart transplant, airing on NJTV's news program, NJ Today. Photo by Steve McCarthy.


UPDATED April 12, 2012 – Montclair, NJ – Wednesday through Friday, April 11,12 & 13, NJTV’s news program NJ Today will broadcast a three-part series called Ryan’s Heart, relaying the touching story of one local college student’s heart transplant and his journey to meet the donor’s family.

The series, which will air as part of NJ Today‘s week-nightly newscast, is produced by Ryan Miller, who is the transplant recipient, and Lindsay Rassmann. Both are students at Montclair State University. The film project was overseen by Steve McCarthy, Media Arts Producer in the University’s Department of Communication Studies.  Montclair State is the broadcast home of NJ Today.

Each segment of Ryan’s Heart on NJ Today will be accompanied by an interview connected to the story. On Wednesday, Managing Editor Mike Schneider sits down with Dr. Mark Zucker, who performed Ryan’s transplant.  On Thursday, he will speak with Jessica Melore – Senior Education & Programs Manager, NJ Organ and Tissue Sharing Network.  On Friday, Ryan Miller himself will join Schneider in-studio to discuss his transplant experience, the journey to meet the donor’s family, and making the broadcast piece. This special series coincides with “National Donate Life Month,” a presidential proclamation encouraging people to become organ and tissue donors. 

Tune in to NJ Today at 6, 7:30 and 11pm on NJTV (check local listings).  

Watch Parts 1 and 2 of Ryan’s Heart here: https://www.njtvonline.org/njtoday/video/msu-student-chronicles-his-own-heart-transplant-journey/

SPECIAL ONLINE Q&A: Want to know more about Ryan Miller’s journey? Ask him!  Send a question or send him a message on our Facebook page and Twitter account…Ryan will respond between 6:30 and 7pm on Friday, April 13th. Go to NJTV’s Facebook page facebook.com/NJTVonline or Twitter outpost @NJTVonline to leave a comment or a tweet. Ryan will respond to as many comments as time allows.

Major funding for NJ Today provided by New Jersey Manufacturers, Verizon, PSE&G and New Jersey Education Association.

NJTV brings quality public television programs and resources to communities throughout New Jersey and its Tri-state neighbors. NJTV’s broadcast schedule combines acclaimed national PBS series like American Masters, Nature, Charlie Rose, and BBC World News America with an array of state-focused news, arts and public affairs shows, including Reporters Roundtable,  One-on-One with Steve Adubato, Perspectives, Caucus New Jersey, Due Process and State of the Arts. The station’s week-nightly news broadcast, NJ Today, features stories from across the Garden State. NJTV complements its growing news staff by partnering with state-wide media and higher education institutions. The network actively solicits viewer news tips, story ideas and feedback, along with locally-produced film shorts and long-form documentaries, making New Jerseyans part of the network’s editorial team. The network’s website, www.njtvonline.org posts the latest local news, information and program schedules, and its Education section offers local educators free, classroom-ready, digital resources through VITALNJ.

NJTV is comprised of WNJN, WNJS, WNJB, and WNJT, which collectively broadcast throughout NJ. Formerly New Jersey Network (NJN), NJTV is operated under an agreement with the state of New Jersey by Public Media NJ, Inc. (PMNJ), a non-profit affiliate of WNET, parent company of award-winning New York public television stations THIRTEEN and WLIW21. NJTV sponsorships and partnerships are available.

The DuMont Television Center at Montclair State University is a fully equipped, highly sophisticated state-of-the-art facility providing the latest in high definition broadcast and production equipment and capability. The Center continues a tradition of excellence in television started at Montclair State University in 1952 by Allen B. DuMont, a pioneer of the industry. Today the DuMont Television Center serves as an instructional laboratory for the University’s established and highly regarded programs in broadcasting, media, and communications.


Heart transplant recipient Ryan Miller hugs the donor's mother Dawna Tucker. Photo by Steve McCarthy.

Heart transplant recipient Ryan Miller is hugged during a reunion with the donor's family as the donor's father, Steve Tucker, tearfully looks on. Photo by Steve McCarthy.

The heart donor's family surrounds Ryan Miller. Photo by Steve McCarthy.