“Team Danny” raised more than $2,300 for the National Kidney Foundation at this year’s walk on May 23 at Hofstra University.
“Just recently we had a family member go through surgery and they said Danny was their inspiration to get through everything,” said his mother, Laura Ritchie.
This was the second time Team Danny has walked in support of the National Kidney Foundation. Danny’s sister, Elizabeth started Team Danny as a way to support her brother. ”We also do the walk in order to honor the donor family,” said Laura. “They still remain anonymous and this is our way of giving back and trying to raise awareness for the need for organ donation.”
A very sick little boy
Danny was born with vesicouteral reflux, a condition that causes back up in the kidneys, causing the organs to become enlarged and causing irreversible damage The urologist told the Ritchies that Danny would need a kidney transplant by age 10. His reflux condition caused him to develop stage four chronic kidney disease. There are only five stages.
In October 2007, When Danny was 12, his blood tests began to show signs that his chronic kidney disease was worsening. “I remember receiving that call at work, telling me that he needs to be seen very often,” Laura Ritchie said. “I knew in my heart that things were not good. I left my office and cried outside and said, ‘God, I do not want to lose him, please.’”
Danny’s condition worsened, and doctors told the family that he would need a transplant within the next six to nine months. He was placed on a waiting list for a kidney at Stony Brook University in March 2008. Doctors tested Larry and Laura to see if they were a blood match. Larry wasn’t, and because of a medical condition, doctors said they wouldn’t take Laura’s kidney.
On November 3, 2008, was given the gift of life when he received a donor kidney and underwent his first kidney transplant. Based on his age, doctors said it would reasonable to assume that Danny will need a few transplants in his lifetime.
Danny is doing great
Danny is 15 now doing great, said Laura. “He’ll be going into 10th grade next year. He’s still being home tutored, but we are all hoping he can return to school next year.”
Since his kidney transplant in November of 2008, Laura reports that Danny grown several inches in height and has become much stronger. Baseball is still his favorite sport, although he loves to play XBox Live. “he’s really looking forward to our pool opening on Memorial Day!” said Laura.