Cal Volleyball's Savannah Rennie makes Historic Comeback after Liver Transplant

By JonathanMcCorkell
Oct. 09, 2016

In the summer of 2015, before her freshman year at UC Berkeley, now 19-year old Rennie Savannah began to experience splitting headaches, fevers, nausea, loss of appetite, body soreness and an endless unbearable pain in her abdomen. 

She was diagnosed last September with congenital hepatic fibrosis, a liver disease that would threaten her life without an aggressive treatment and transplant. This past May she received a liver transplant in Indiana.

Not even four months after surgery Rennie was back on the court at Hass Pavilion in Berkeley for volleyball practice.  

The redshirt freshman outside hitter at Cal would be able to be herself again, Not even four months had passed since the operation, but Rennie felt no fear as she stepped onto the court at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley.

Yesterday, in her collegiate debut and first match since she fell ill, she recorded her first kill against the Utah Utes during a home match at Berkeley. 

"Ever since I got sick, I thought about it every single day, that moment of going in and trying to make a difference," she said to the Pac-12 Network after the game. "It was just like a dream."

Rennie, a redshirt freshman from San Diego, started to tear up after she earned her first kill, a moment that had been in her mind "probably every minute" of every day, she said. "It's been a long journey, so I teared up a little bit, but I knew I had to keep it together on the court to show no weakness -- that's just me. It was definitely an emotional moment."

Even Olympian Kerri Walsh Jennings was inspired by Rennie's comeback.