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New Jersey Man Receives New Face, Hands And Love

New Jersey man who was burned in a car crash received a new face and hands, making medical history.

Joe Dimeo was asleep at the wheel when his car flipped and caught fire. He burned over 80 percent of his body.

After a 23-hour operation involving a team of 140 medical professionals at New York University’s Langone Medical Center, Dimeo became the first person in the world to successfully undergo a transplant of both his face and hands from the same donor.

Dimeo says he was happy with the surgery .

Dimeo started posting about his new reality and struggles online. Among those following his journey: Jessica Kolby, a nurse from Ohio.

“After reading his story I was kinda just fascinated about him, and what he’s gone through. And I was like, ‘I need to see more of Joe.’ And then he messaged me, so, and then we did not stop talking since,” Kolby tells Inside Edition.

They first bonded over the fact that they both owned Boston Terriers, and their special relationship bloomed.

“My first thought was you know, ‘Wow, that sucks, because he was extremely handsome and young, only 19 when it happened.’ And then to see pictures of him in the burn unit, I just think about his parents, you know. How hard that must have been for them,” Kolby says.

Dimeo and Kolby now live together in North Bergen, New Jersey.

Some people on social media are mocking the couple’s romance.

“It makes me upset to see the hateful comments. It’s unfortunate that people have to be that mean,” Kolby says.

Dimeo’s face is 30 years older than his own. His new face still grows hair that Dimeo shaves.

“When I got the new face, I was just happy it wasn’t the burned face,” Dimeo says.

Dimeo does physical therapy exercises every day and may need more surgeries in the future. He says having Kolby in his life makes it all easier.

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