Massachusetts National Guard Army Veteran, John Jennings met the stranger who gave him his life back by donating the soldier his kidney.
SFC John Jennings was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) several years ago and after sharing his story with the community, a donor came forward to give Jennings a chance at life.
Polycystic Kidney Disease, a disorder passed down through families, causes multiple cysts to form on the kidneys and become enlarged. The disease can begin at any age and the cause is unknown. In the case of U.S. Army Sgt. John Jennings of Attleboro, he was diagnosed in 1995 when high blood pressure alerted Army doctors to a problem.
Medications to lower his blood pressure stalled the problem temporally. As with most people, the Jennings family believed that they had this under control and had plenty of time before having to take the next steps.
Three months after sharing his story with the community, the Jennings family were granted their wish when they found a match in October and were given a November date for the transplant.
"We would like you to meet a very special person who gave my husband back his life, Patrick Fitgibbons," Rebecca Jennings posted on her husband's Facebook page. "Just a amazing person to do this for a total stranger. Thank you!"
"Such an amazing morning to meet Patrick, we will be eternally grateful for such a wonderful gift," she added. "I can’t wait to meet you Debbie!! From one wife to another THANK YOU….. THANK YOU for being so supportive of your husband for giving my husband chance to be a dad again! You and your family will always have special place in my heart."