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Dear Friends and Family,
Some of you many know that since 2008, I have been living with end stage renal disease, also known as kidney failure. I currently spend four hours a day, three days a week hooked up to a dialysis machine. Doctors have told me that a kidney transplant is my best hope for a return to a good quality of life.
I was born and raised in Olean, New York and moved to Daytona Beach, Florida in 1987. After college, I joined the U.S. Navy and deployed twice to the Persian Gulf aboard the aircraft carrier, U.S.S. America. After completing a law enforcement academy, I became a deputy sheriff with Flagler County and then moved on to work in the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office.
I recently reconnected on Facebook with Sandi Dykstra McLean, a classmate from Olean High School. I used to sit behind her in study hall where we’d sing “Stranded At The Drive-In” from the movie, Grease. Sandi is now employed by the city of East Rochester and a single mother of two beautiful young women.
On her own, and without my knowledge, Sandi went to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville to get tested to be my kidney donor. To my amazing good fortune, she was a perfect match. We are scheduled for surgery on October 2nd.
Sandi’s sacrifice is a huge one and I could never live with myself if this becomes a financial burden to her as well. She will have travel costs and we will both have uninsured expenses including co-pays, medications, and time away from work.
To help offset these uninsured costs, a fundraising campaign has been established with HelpHOPELive (formerly NTAF), a nonprofit organization that has been assisting the transplant community for nearly 30 years. All contributions are tax deductible, are held by HelpHOPELive in the Southeast Kidney Transplant Fund, and are administered by HelpHOPELive for transplant-related expenses only. Please consider making a contribution.Thank you for helping Sandi and me. Your generosity is greatly appreciated.
Charles (Chuck) Ickes