"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."
This past winter, Jim and Jennie used the snowfall to raise awareness by building a giant snow kidney in their front yard. (video here)
I have become quite good friends with Jennie, Jim's wife, and together we are creating a wonderful pinup calendar for 2015 to help raise money for their family. She even stepped in front of the camera herself (and did a fabulous job, I might add)!
Below are the first few gals to participate. I cannot wait to show you the rest (coming soon!). Information on how to purchase a calendar will also be made available as soon as they are ready. Enjoy!