Everyday Heroes

"Will You Be My Kidney Sista? I'm A Match!"

Watch the moment a woman finds out her daughter's kindergarten teacher is a perfect match for her kidney transplant.

That amazing video is at the bottom of this story, but first we have to tell you about these two amazing women their determination to defy the odds.

Tracy's Battle: Lupus, Chemo, and Kidney Failure

Let's start with the woman at the center of this story. Her name is Tracy Shearin-Drayton and she is desperately waiting for a kidney transplant in Thomasville, NC. She's a mother who's been fighting a serious condition, Lupus. The medical complications Lupus has caused for Tracy have not been easy.

The photo above is Tracy ringing the bell after completing her final chemotherapy treatment in January 2019. The same say she posted on Facebook:

"We are CELEBRATING all day in my household. Last chemo treatment ???? The good doctor stated once I'm done we will start the kidney transplant process." (January 11, 2019)

Searching For A Donor

That also started the search for a suitable donor, putting Tracy on the National Kidney Registry . Tracy and her family geared up for a long wait, perhaps even 5-8 years on a list, hoping for a miracle. They didn't just wait, they were determined to get the word out and hopefully find a living donor out there somewhere in the universe.

Little did they know, Tracy's daughter you see above wearing a t-shirt they had created to raise awareness, would become the link to a potential donor. Jada's in 3rd grade now, but her former kindergarten teacher decided it was her calling to get tested. Here's the moment Pam Oast shared the news, she's a perfect match:

Before Pam shared that news with Tracy, she flew to the VA Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA for rigorous testing. The VA National Transplant Program has four kidney transplant centers, located in Iowa City, IA; Nashville, TN; Pittsburgh, PA; and Portland, OR. Tracy is a veteran who had to leave military service on a medical discharge following her lupus diagnosis.

So what's next? More testing for Pam to get the final clearances to go ahead. She just finished the final round yesterday (November 21st). If everything comes back and is good to go, the transplant surgery will be scheduled and both ladies will fly to Pittsburgh for the operation.

Thanks to Pam's social media, we also learned this isn't her first selfless act. According to this Facebook post from October she's given the gift of life before in the form of a blood cell donation:

We salute both of these amazing women and their journey. It's not an easy process, but just about anyone can be screened to see if they're a match.

How can you start something good?

Organ Donation Information and Resource

CORE: Center for Organ Recovery and Education

Donate Life America

National Kidney Registry

The Conversation
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