Lifesaving donations needed in Niagara

St. Catharines Standard | Maryanne Firth

It’s a gift Linda Mackey will never be able to repay.

Delivered by her lifelong friend, it was an unforgettable present that gave the Niagara Falls resident her freedom back.

When she was casually informed that Nelly Hicks had begun undergoing tests to see if she was a viable kidney donor, Mackey broke down and cried.

It’s a moment the now 53-year-old will never forget — one she will be eternally grateful for.

It’s part of the reason why Mackey and Hicks now get together every Dec. 6, the date of their respective surgeries, to celebrate.

“It’s a special day — when your life starts again,” Mackey says.

There are more than 1,500 people in Ontario, about 40 of them in Niagara, who are waiting for that life-changing phone call with news a potential organ match has been found.

Mackey knows the impact an organ donation can make on a life, not only because of the selfless gift awarded by Hicks, but also because of two additional transplants she has received since the age of 12.
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