Proving that there’s nothing a mother wouldn’t do for her child, Cirila Munyon has pulled out all the stops to try to find a kidney donor for her 15-year-old daughter, Robin Schrader.
In May, Schrader found out that her kidneys were failing after a routine physical before cheerleading tryouts. The exam revealed that the otherwise healthy young woman was facing a serious medical crisis. Schrader was diagnosed with membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN), a rare autoimmune disorder that damages the kidneys. The high school freshman is now on dialysis three days a week for four hours a day.
But she’s also a great candidate for kidney donation.
And after Munyon found out that she herself wasn’t a good candidate to be a donor, she first took to Facebook to put the word out to see if anyone she knew might be a good match for her daughter. When Facebook failed to turn up any matches, Munyon took things one step further, painting the back window of her car to read, “My 15 yr old needs a kidney. Type O blood. Call or txt 520-954-3350.”
When John Drattlo, who had never met Munyon or Schrader, saw the message on Munyon’s car, he turned up at Munyon’s door, explaining that while he himself wasn’t a match, he had taken a picture of Munyon’s car and wanted to know if he could share her call for help with his own Facebook network.
And Drattlo kept going, determined to do whatever he could to help Munyon and Schrader in their search for a kidney donor.
And finally, Drattlo and Schrader met in person:
While a kidney donor match for Schrader has not been found yet, Munyon — and Drattlo — are determined. And more strangers, just like Drattlo, from all around the country are now reaching out, both to help spread the word and to be tested themselves to see if they might be a match. And all of them are hopeful that one day Schrader will be able to try out and be a part of the cheerleading team — and go on to live a healthy life as a young woman and then adult — as a result.
According to the National Kidney Foundation, there are presently more than 100,000 Americans awaiting a kidney transplant. The median wait time for a person’s first kidney transplant is 3.6 years. In 2014, 17,107 kidney transplants took place in the U.S. Of these, 11,570 came from deceased donors and 5,537 came from living donors. Over 3,000 people are added to the kidney transplant list each month, and 13 people die each day waiting for a lifesaving kidney transplant.
To learn more about becoming a kidney donor, you can contact the National Kidney Foundation at 855-653-2273 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.