Give and take: Matched organ donation helps 2 families

Corey Hurlbut and 
his wife Kristin Gjerset talk about the day Corey received a new kidney. On the same day Kristin donated one of hers in a paired organ exchange. They are shown Tuesday, May 10, at their home in Sauk Rapids.(Photo: Jason Wachter,
ST. CLOUD TIMES | Stephanie Dickrell

SAUK RAPIDS — Check that box on your driver's license. Become a donor.

That's the advice of a Sauk Rapids family with intimate knowledge of the subject. Almost four years ago, Kristin Gjerset and her husband Corey Hurlbut were part of a paired organ exchange.

An anonymous man donated his kidney to Corey, who developed kidney disease as a result of diabetes. Gjerset donated her kidney to a man from Wisconsin. They had surgery on the same day.

Both are still amazed by the generosity people have.

While Gjerset was prompted to donate because he husband needed a kidney and they couldn't find a healthy, compatible match, her husband's donor participated just to donate.

Gjerset said a lot of people don't think about organ donation because they don't have to. Continue reading
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