Chris Doing of Carpentersville and Kalin Koychev of Wheeling are two very special men. Both stepped forward to help a young boy they’d never met have a better life. Both allowed a surgeon to remove from them a perfectly good kidney to be transplanted into little Nathan Saavedra.
Providing money for a cause is one thing; providing your time is another. But these two men gave of themselves in the most literal sense.
Doing’s kidney lasted only five months in the Carpentersville boy before it folded on itself in March 2011, lost blood supply and had to be removed. But he said he didn’t regret having gone through it.
Time will tell whether Koychev’s kidney, transplanted a week ago into Nathan, who suffers from a birth defect that causes blockages in his urinary tract that lead to kidney damage, will do the trick.
Live organ donors indeed are a special breed. They can donate a kidney, a partial liver, lobes of a lung, a pancreas, a section of intestine. Livers regenerate; the remaining kidney grows to take on the duty of two. And donor organizations are quick to point out that donating an organ doesn’t mean one’s life will be any shorter or less fulfilling.