Jobs to Apple Fans: Give Up Your Organs

"I'm vertical, I'm back at Apple and loving every day of it."

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    NEWSLETTERS

    AP
    Apple CEO Steve Jobs speaks at an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2009. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

    Steve Jobs' top priority as he walked on stage to a standing ovation from the Apple faithful in San Francisco Wednesday was not a product pitch but instead a powerful and personal statement.

    Looking gaunt and with a shaking voice, Jobs talked about his fight against cancer and how grateful he is to a young man who donated his liver and saved his life.

    Steve Jobs Takes the Stage

    [BAY] Steve Jobs Takes the Stage
    Apple CEO gets a standing ovation as he takes the stage in San Francisco.

    Jobs is known to be one of the most private people in Silicon Valley so the openness came as shock to many.

    The personal portion of the Apple presentation lasted less than a minute, but was the subject that had the room buzzing after the product pitches were done.

    "I'm very happy to be here today with you all.  As some as you may know, about five months ago I had a liver transplant. So I now have the liver of a mid-20s person who died in a car crash and was generous enough to donate their organs.  And I wouldn't be here without such generosity.  So I hope all of us can be as generous and elect to be organ donors," said Jobs.

    Jobs has not appeared in public since last October.  He has been on a medical leave for most of the year and it was during the his absence that he received the transplant.

    His medical issues have lasted more than five years ago.  They included treatment for a rare form of pancreatic cancer before the liver transplant.
     
    Apple stock rose and fell for the past several years surrounding rumors about his health.

    Today's performance was a winner on Wall Street as Apple reached a 52-week high of $174.47 at one point during the trading day, ending at $171.14.      

    According to OrganDonor.gov the waiting list of candidates for organ donations as of today is 103,427.  

    Ever the showman Job told the crowd, "I'm vertical, I'm back at Apple and loving every day of it."