Steve Jobs Refused Apple CEO Tim Cook's Liver Transplant Offer
The man who would succeed Jobs as the head of the tech giant once offered to give the Apple co-founder, who shared his rare blood type, a portion of his liver.
Current Apple CEO Tim Cook once offered an ailing Steve Jobs a portion of his liver when the Apple co-founder was in desperate need of a transplant. But Jobs refused, yelling at Cook that he'd "never let [him] do that."
The incident is described in the upcoming Becoming Steve Jobs biography by veteran technology reporter Brent Schlender and Fast Company executive editor Rick Tetzeli. The magazine excerpted a portion of the book, which comes out on March 24, in an article posted online.
According to those excerpts, Cook had his blood tested and found out that, like Jobs, he had a rare blood type and guessed that it might be the same. He also did research and discovered that a living person can transfer a portion of their liver to someone in need of transplant. Since the liver is a regenerative organ, the book explains, both the transplanted portion and the remaining portion of the donor's liver will be become whole organs.
Cook made the offer to Jobs at his predecessor's Palo Alto home, Fast Company explains, but Jobs refused.
"He cut me off at the legs, almost before the words were out of my mouth," Cook said. " 'No,' he said. 'I'll never let you do that. I'll never do that.' "
Indeed, in the book excerpt, Cook recalls that Jobs "popped up in bed" and said, "No, I'm not doing that!" His reaction marked one of the few times Jobs yelled at Cook during the 13 years they knew each other, Cook says.
"Somebody that's selfish, doesn't reply like that," Cook adds. "I mean, here's a guy, he's dying, he's very close to death because of his liver issue, and here's someone healthy offering a way out. I said, 'Steve, I'm perfectly healthy, I've been checked out. Here's the medical report. I can do this and I'm not putting myself at risk, I'll be fine.' And he doesn't think about it. It was not, 'Are you sure you want to do this?' It was not, 'I'll think about it.' It was not, 'Oh, the condition I'm in … ' "
Jobs died in 2011 after a battle with pancreatic cancer. Cook was officially named Apple's CEO a few months prior to Jobs' death as Jobs' health was failing.
A rep for Apple has not yet responded to The Hollywood Reporter's request for comment.