Parent offers Cambridge educator a gift like no other

Boston Globe | Eric Moskowitz

Julia Kanno (right) quietly had some tests done before surprising Christine Tierney with her offer.

CAMBRIDGE — “My kidneys are rock stars!” Julia Kanno called out, just as Christine Tierney was pulling away from the red-brick elementary school where she runs a popular after-school program. “Do you want one?”

Tierney heard, but it didn’t register. There was no preamble, just a loud and unconventional greeting — “Halt!” — that was unmistakably Kanno, a free-spirited artist and writer who lives next door to the school. And then that offer, so matter of fact, as if it was a stick of gum and not a vital organ.

A private person, Tierney, 48, had confided to Kanno and two other Cambridgeport School parents with medical experience that she had a serious kidney disorder and would eventually need a transplant. But that was many months ago, and they hadn’t discussed it since. Continue reading