A San Francisco Bay Area vice principal is spending the Christmas recess preparing to undergo a kidney transplant to save her former student, the Washington Post reports.
Christine Buell is donating her organ on Dec. 29 to Kelvin Sanders, 19, who has end-stage renal disease. She learned from perusing Facebook about his sudden illness and that his family was searching for a donor.
Buell, 45, recalled Sanders as a young man with excellent manners who was well-liked by teachers and staff at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory School in San Francisco. She immediately signed up for testing to find out if she was a match.
“Everything happens for a reason. I was shocked and happy when I heard it was my teacher who was the match,” Sanders, a former high school football player, said.
Sanders’ parents were not appropriate matches, and several of his father’s co-workers were tested but were not matches, either. Their frantic search turned to social media.
According to the Post, there are about 122,000 people in the United States awaiting a kidney transplant. Unfortunately, the majority of them will never get one.
The medical procedure is generally safe (only 0.01 percent die), but complications sometimes arise for recipients and donors.
“I broke down,” Sanders’ mother, Nicole, stated. “I was worried about Christine and maybe she shouldn’t go through with it. But she assured me as tears were running down my face that she understood there was a chance of something happening to her but that she was confident she would be in the percent that is fine. That lady is amazing.”
Buell said, “It is a gift given freely.” She’s going into the operation with “100 percent faith that this is the right thing to do.”
Read more at the Washington Post.