Kidney transplant ties two Chesterton 'families'


Stephanie Kuziela, Chesterton clerk/treasurer, and Randy Darnell hang out in her office while Sharon Darnell watches from the door. (Mark Davis / Post-Tribune)
Stephanie Kuziela's gesture did more than reach across party lines. It saved a life.

Kuziela, Chesterton's clerk-treasurer, donated a kidney on Dec. 23 to Randy Darnell, husband of former long-time town councilwoman Sharon Darnell.

Kuziela, in her fourth year in office, is a Republican. The Darnells are Democrats.

"(Kuziela) said she'll make Randy a Republican from inside out now," said Sharon Darnell, who decided not to run in 2015 after four terms because of her husband's health.

"He needed a little more upkeep and I didn't think I could do both, so I chose him," she said.

"I chose you, too," Kuziela said, looking over at Randy Darnell as the three spoke recently about the ordeal that has entwined their lives and brought them as close, if not closer, than family. Continue reading