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|Transplant Type - Kidney|
Below is a great story from Kelly Jacques, one of Jim's supporters!
"The moment I found out Jim was in need of a transplant I knew I wanted to help but wasn’t sure how. Jim comes from a wonderful family that would give you the shirt off their back to help you so I wanted to make sure I could help them too. I started by asking friends and family for ideas on how I could help this family raise money for his transplant. I had 2 great suggestions right away. Garage sale & bake sale so I decided to combo them together.
I started of by sending a quick email to friends, family and coworkers to let them know what I was doing and the donation emails started pouring in. People were donating items for the sale, baking & even offered their home to hold the sale at. I spent the next few weeks preparing for the sales. Emailing, organizing and pricing, picking up and dropping off, etc. My mother in law let us use her house to have the sale and my church donated the tables to use. We were able to raise over $1,000 to contribute to his fundraising campaign. It was a lot of work but worth every minute. I am still helping the family in any way I can."
The month before his 7th birthday, Jim was diagnosed with type-1 diabetes. Thankfully, he was able to grow up without experiencing many issues related to diabetes, but as he grew older, the effects of being a lifelong diabetic were becoming more obvious.
In 2000, he went to the ER with what he thought was heart problems. While he was thrilled to learn his heart was in good shape, he received the shocking news that his kidneys had stopped working; he was in end-stage renal failure. Doctors said a kidney/pancreas transplant was critical to his survival. This was a frightening time, but Jim was overwhelmed by the support from his loved ones. Eight wonderful people in his life were tested in hopes of being his kidney donor.
Jims friend Jeremy was a perfect match. The transplant date was set, and somewhat miraculously, the night before the scheduled a surgery, a pancreas donor was found.
Life changed dramatically for Jim after his successful kidney/pancreas transplant! He met and married his wife, Jennie; they purchased a home and began a life together. While they were grateful for his new lease on life, they also understood that other transplants may be in his future. In 2006, Jim required a second pancreas. Now, his donated kidney is slowing down, and they know a second kidney transplant is necessary.
Jim and Jennie embrace the gift of transplantation, as they realize it’s all about the quality of life that can be achieved after receiving a new organ. They look forward to overcoming this transplant, so they enjoy many more blessings in the future. But right now, they need your help.
The average kidney transplant costs approximately $250,000. Even with health insurance, which will cover the cost of the transplant itself, he still faces significant medical expenses related to the surgery. He will need a lifetime of follow-up care and daily anti-rejection medications. These medications are very costly, and they’re as important to his survival as the transplant itself.
You can help by making a tax-deductible donation to NFT in honor of Jim. If you'd prefer to send your gift by mail, please send it to the NFT Minnesota Transplant Fund, 5350 Poplar Avenue, Suite 430, Memphis, TN 38119. Please be sure to write "in honor of Jim Gorbunow" on the memo line.
Thank you for your generosity!
Patient Health Institute: *[University of Minnesota Medical Center|http://www.uofmmedicalcenter.org/]*