CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Tera Winfree and her friend, Robin Porter, vowed in 2009 to someday play in the Women's 55 doubles division of the Public Courts tennis tournament.
At the time, that might've seemed a bit audacious to some.
Winfree was born with cystic fibrosis and her lung capacity had gradually deteriorated to the point that she could barely handle a brief walk, much less a couple sets of tennis.
She was a frail 87 pounds in 2009, and her friends helped carry an oxygen tank to matches because she no longer had the strength.
Doctors told Winfree she wouldn't survive the calendar year without a lung transplant. She was on the wrong end of 40-love facing triple life point.
"In August 2009, it got really bad," Winfree said. "I couldn't even stand. I got pneumonia and went into the hospital. They called for the transplant.
"My lungs had had it. I said, 'Let's do it.'"
On Sunday afternoon Winfree, now 57, played her second Public Courts match in as many days. Results didn't matter.
They were Winfree's first tournament matches since she underwent a double lung transplant at Cleveland Clinic on Nov. 2, 2009.
"It's amazing," said Porter, her doubles partner in the pair of 4.0 matches this weekend. "It's just unbelievable for her to be back out here."
In the spring of 2007, Winfree and Porter were playing a doubles match together in Ashland, Ky. They lost the first set 6-4 and Winfree told Porter she couldn't continue.
Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disorder that most critically affects the lungs, and a lifetime of illnesses like pneumonia and the flu had taken a toll. She wasn't diagnosed with cystic fibrosis until she was 36.
Until then, her breathing issues were chalked up to bronchitis or asthma.
Winfree, a lifelong resident of Campbell's Creek and 1974 graduate of DuPont High School, spent two years on oxygen after her last competitive tennis match. She tried to remain active, but tennis was too arduous and ambitious with an oxygen tank involved.