Transplant Kindness Comes Full Circle
A California teenager has a new lease on life. He has received a long-awaited kidney transplant.But there's something that makes Ben Street's story even more amazing. The transplant was just one part of a unique, four-way organ swap.
A Dream Come True
It was the day Street waited nearly a year to see. The 18-year-old left his California hospital room with a new kidney and the promise of a better life. Fifty-five-year-old Marybeth Bobich is the woman who has made it possible. "Hi, Ben. Wow. You look even better today. You are out of your hospital gown. It is good to see you again," she told Street in greeting. Bobich traveled across country from her Pennsylvania home to the San Diego hospital, to donate one of her kidneys to a young man she had never met. "I'm really not supposed to tell you this, but your recipient is an 18-year-old, and that was just the best," Bobich said.
Their hospital meeting following the successful transplant surgery was the start of a life-long friendship. "It's full circle," Street said. "It's just the generosity people have to not know someone yet to give so much to someone."
Full circle indeed.
A Unique Turn of Events
Street's mother gave one of her two kidneys to a woman, 49-year-old Tracy Rogers -- who also happens to be Bobich' sister-in-law. Her surgery took place back in Pennsylvania at the very same time that Street and Bobich were undergoing their procedure in California. "My wife is in Pittsburgh and she is doing well and he is doing great, which is the best," said Street's father, Chuck. Father and son can't wait to reunite with mom. One of the first things Street did following his surgery was eat his first peanut butter jelly sandwich. It was his first in more than a year.