Two kidney recipients to marry at Don Edwards Park

Newark Advocate | Ana Jeffries

Victoria Holmes, left, and Tony Schmalstig both are kidney recipients with their brothers serving as their donors. Their shared circumstances have brought them together, and they plan to marry at Don Edwards ballpark. (Photo: Michael Lehmkuhle/The Advocate)

NEWARK — When Victoria Holmes’ brother, Michael Holmes, decided to give her a kidney in 2003, she knew the transplant would change her life.

It meant she could live without being hooked up to a dialysis machine every night. She would have the energy to walk, play sports and spend time with her family.

But she didn’t realize then that her brother’s gift would help her find the love of her life.

In 2010, she met Tony Schmalstig at the Transplant Games of America. He also had received a donated kidney from his brother, in 1984.

Their connection was instantaneous, and it wasn’t long before they were inseparable. Continue reading