, who is deaf, doesn't remember doing this, but he
came to just as Angela passed and signed the words, "I love you." She
signed them back, and he
fell asleep again.
It's no surprise that Peter
woke up, that he
knew Angela was there, that he
didn't miss the chance to declare his
"We are a perfect match," he
says, Angela interpreting his
Perfect, but different, he
is deaf and white, she's
hearing and African American.
"A lot of people think that interracial marriages are a challenge," he
...Peter, 36, is a clinical neuropsychologist and assistant professor at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf at RIT.
became deaf when he
was 5 years old after contracting spinal meningitis.He
learned to sign in late adolescence.
had gone there because the school has a program for deaf and hard-of-hearing students.Angela enrolled for the school's interpreter training program. Peter
admits it was love at first sight; Angela says it might have taken just a little longer.
Whatever, they have been together since then, marrying in 1993.
was finishing an internship for his
doctoral degree from Gallaudet University
in Washington, D.C.
The Hausers were about to move to Rochester, where Peter
was to undertake a post-doctoral fellowship at the UR Medical Center
Angela had a persistent cold - "it lasted a couple of weeks," she
says - so she
went to her
blood pressure turned out to be drastically elevated and further tests showed she
had end-stage renal (kidney) failure.She
was 31 years old.
In November, after the Hausers had moved to Rochester, Angela went on dialysis, three days a week.
All the time, Peter
appeared to be healthy.
"Through the whole thing, she
didn't seem to be different, even after her
kidneys failed," he
Two friends of Peter
and Angela then volunteered to be tested to see whether either was a good match to donate a kidney to Angela.Almost as an afterthought, Peter
decided to go along. He
had thought that because he
and Angela were of different races, it was unlikely he
could be a donor, though he
soon learned this was not the case.
As it turned out, Peter
was a good match, the best of the three potential donors.
Nonetheless, the Hausers debated going ahead with the transplant.
"I had to convince her
to let me give my kidney because she
did not like the idea of both of us being in the hospital," Peter
O'Hearn says that it is typical of the Hausers that Angela would be worried about Peter
Tonight Angela and Peter
and some of their friends will gather at O'Hearn's for a Valentine's party, celebrating all of the good things that love can bring.