Organ Match Miracle
Recent graduates are preparing for the next phase in their lives,and that's no different for one Springfield, Missouri teenager. But her to-do list involves a kidney transplant. And as Reed Galin reports, the donor is a man who is generous of spirit and abundant in faith and was standing right in front of her the whole time.
(Locator: Springfield, Missouri)
Nat: (laughter with friends and photos taken)
It's high school graduation for Laura England of Springfield, Missouri. It hasn't been easy for her. During her senior year, Laura's kidneys failed. She's on dialysis.
Laura England/Transplant Candidate: "Half my day, seems like, is dedicated to sitting in a chair hooked up to a machine.
Laura needs a transplant.
Laura England/Transplant Candidate: "We didn't really ask anyone or come to anyone like, 'Hey, can you give me a kidney?' or whatever."
Nat at graduation: "You look so smart!"
The Rev. Michael Davis is Laura's pastor, and now a treasured friend.
Nat Laura: "It's the hat!"
In the most unusual request ever made from his pulpit, Pastor Davis, of St. Luke United Methodist Church, asked his small congregation who might donate a kidney to Laura.
The Rev. Michael Davis/Pastor, St. Luke United Methodist Church: "And miracle of all miracles, the first three people who volunteered matched!"
Laura England/Transplant Candidate: When all three matched, it was just absolutely amazing. I mean, I'm just overwhelmed.'
Of the three, Pastor Davis was chosen to be Laura's donor.
The Rev. Michael Davis: 'When called to step up to the plate, what do you do? And I was called.'
His decision did not come easily.
The Rev. Michael Davis: 'Fear, trepidation, wondering what is God calling me to be at this time?'
Nat graduation announcer: 'Laura Michelle England.' (crowd cheers)
For Laura England, it's a new life with her diploma and a kidney from her pastor.
Laura England/Transplant Candidate: 'I'm kind of scared but I think I'm more excited just to get this done and get on with life.'
The transplant operation is scheduled for August. Getting a new kidney from an unrelated donor occurs in about 20 percent of all transplants from living donors. Sometimes, an unrelated donor turns out to be a better match than a relative.
Rev. Davis is in his fifties. He says opportunities like this are a great argument for why people should stay in shape...maybe they can help save a life.
Also see: Pastor answers call, gives teen second chance at life.