Posted by: donatelifeco | 01/20/2010

Stepdad and stepson, closer than ever

Keith and Johny

Keith with his stepson Johny

Colorado resident Keith Ashby has undergone a remarkable transformation since his kidney transplant in May 2006.

Before his transplant, Keith was overweight and had suffered from high blood pressure for years. He was exhausted, sometimes so much that he couldn’t get out of bed. Finally, Keith’s doctors told him that he was in kidney failure and would need a transplant to survive.

Keith knew that, due to the long list of people waiting, it would likely take years before he would receive a kidney from a deceased donor, so he went to his biological family to find a living donor.

Though several family members stepped forward, no one was a good match.

When Keith’s stepson, Johny, found out about the situation, he stepped forward as a potential donor.

“From day one Johny told me that he knew in his heart that he was the one who was going to give me a kidney,” Keith relates. “Johny is white, which made him a much less likely match, but he offered to be tested, just in case. It turned out he was a surprisingly good match for me—a four out of six—so he offered to share one of his kidneys.”

Keith and Johny’s transplant took place on May 4, 2006. The surgery went very well. Keith was in the hospital for three days, Johny just two.

Since his transplant, Keith has lost 65 pounds and maintains a healthy, active lifestyle,  running a half marathon in Hawai’i and participating in many of the American Transplant Foundation’s athletic events.

Keith and Johny were excited to learn about Colorado’s Donate Life specialty license plate, and they filmed this video with us to spread the word:

Have you purchased a Donate Life plate yet? Leave a comment to let us know!

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