Second chance at life: Man waits 579 days for organ transplant

KMOV | Angie Ricono, Chris Oberholtz

OVERLAND PARK, KS (KCTV) - Bill Ullery knows what it’s like to be young and dying.

"It's kind of like your life gets taken away," the 21-year-old said huddled in a chair inside his Overland Park home.

He wears shades of sickness. The whites of his eyes glow with a yellowish hue, and his skin also showed the effects of jaundice. His time and hope were running out. It’s day No. 577 on the transplant waiting list.

"Could be tomorrow, could be right now. Could be in five minutes," he explains.

Ullery’s life is now a blur of exhaustion and medication. He swallows handfuls of pills and endures dialysis three times a week. There are weekly blood draws where his medical condition is evaluated.

His family now plays a brutal game of numbers. Patients need to be sick enough to qualify for a transplant, even sicker to make it to the top of the list. They also need to survive.

It has been an incredible and powerful journey for Ullery and his family to come to terms with the harsh reality that if he does not get a donor, he will die. Continue reading
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