Erika Zak Bio

Erika Zak Bio

Erika Zak was a 39-year-old girl, who inspired millions of people across the world through her battles for a liver transplant. She died during surgery on Friday. The mother of five-year-old Loie died during surgery.

Erika Zak Siblings

Her twin sister, Jenna Zak, shared some of Zak’s struggles on her own Instagram page, often lambasting the organ donor system in America.

In an Instagram where she tagged UNOS, the United Network for Organ Sharing, Zak showed a picture of her sister in the hospital. This was prior to the news that Zak would be getting transplant surgery.

Zak’s battle against both United Health Care and UNOS was lengthy. First, she was denied coverage for a liver transplant by her health care company; after making an emotional appeal to them last year, she was finally approved.

In 2014, the twin sisters got matching tattoos. “We might be the most “untwinlike” twins ever but least we agree on our tattoos,” Jenna wrote.

As for what the tattoos said?

“Be Brave.”


View this post on Instagram


We might be the most “untwinlike” twins ever but least we agree on our tattoos #bebraveEZ @ohkissthis 😘

A post shared by Jenna Zak (@jaz213) on

Erika Zak Husband & Children

Zak Met Powers in 1998 in Providence. They Were Married in 2009.

Zak met her future husband, Powers, while they were both students in Rhode Island. She, at the Rhode Island School of Design, and he at Brown University.

They were married over ten years later and had their daughter a few years after that.

Erika Zak Death and Cause

Erika died on 23 August 2019 at the age of 39. According to her husband,

Her death came after a liver became available Thursday afternoon, and her transplant team at the Cleveland Clinic hustled to prepare her for surgery.

The news of the available liver buoyed Erika’s spirits and spread excitement among her surgical team and family after waiting more than a year for this moment, he said. Before going into surgery, he said, Erika was able to spend time with the couple’s 5-year-old daughter, Loïe.

Late yesterday the stars briefly aligned while we were at the hospital for an unrelated medical procedure and an organ miraculously became available right then for transplant. We were so excited and rushed our daughter in to spend a half-hour with Erika, the family said in a statement.

She then quickly went into the OR, but deep into the surgery, her body couldn’t handle some of the trauma apparently. She died in surgery.

While our family is devastated by the loss of our beautiful wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend, we do want to express our deepest gratitude to all of those who have supported Erika and our family through these very difficult weeks, months and years. Through her perseverance in life, Erika embodied hope and set an example of strength.

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