By Brad Edwards

CHICAGO (CBS)--It was nothing short of a Christmas time miracle three years ago when “Amazing Ava” received her new heart.

In December 2015, Ava Martin and her family were in Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago.

Meanwhile, in Tennessee, 2-year-old William Heard passed away after a choking incident.

“Ava was really sick in the hospital and her days were pretty numbered,” Ava’s mother Amie Martin said.

The doctor put William’s heart into Ava and he said, “welcome to your new home.”

Ava recently celebrated the three year anniversary since her heart transplant.

Amie and Brian have become close friends with William’s mother and father.

“While we’re grateful for what we have, we are really understanding of what Jamie and Daniel don’t have,” Ava’s father Brian Martin said.

Ava still takes daily anti-rejection medication and is living every moment.

“She does something cute or looks at you with her big blue eyes and you just cant help but be thankful,” Amie said.

The two families plan to reunite for a couple’s weekend in Chicago in January.

The Heards have recently welcomed a new baby girl.