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Heather Johns was diagnosed with kidney disease while serving in the US Air Force in the mid-1990’s after returning home from the Desert Storm. Her original prognosis was dialysis within 2-5 years followed by transplant with a donated kidney. Through healthy living, she proved the doctors wrong and didn’t need dialysis for another 25 years. Now that she is on dialysis and listed for transplant, she will incur costs not covered by insurance.

She lives in Ketchum, Idaho, a small town 2 hours north of Twin Falls where she receives dialysis treatment. She is listed for transplant with the University of Utah (Go Utes!), a 300 mile drive away. She will need to pay for travel and short-term accommodations for at least a month in Utah as well as travel and accommodations for appointments after transplant which are ongoing for years.

Updates (1)

November 2, 2021

Following the mad rush from Ketchum to Salt Lake City on Friday 10/29, Heather had transplant surgery on Saturday 10/30. She was transplanted with two donated pediatric kidneys (through this process, we'll learn more about the donor and his family and we will be able to send a note of thanks to the family of the deceased infant) and then was moved into the Intensive Care Unit at Uof U Health, Eccles Trauma Center. After only one day in ICU, she was moved back to the transplant floor for another day of monitoring, learning, and an anti-rejection drug regimen.

On Monday, November 1, Heather was released from the hospital and she moved into the extended stay hotel room here in the Sugar House neighborhood in SLC.

We want to thank everyone SO much for your positive thoughts, prayers and overall good juju along this journey. Big thanks also for your contributions on this platform - every bit helps us as we incur costs associated with travel, accommodations, medications, and food while we are away from home.

We will be staying in SLC for an indeterminate period as Heather attends appointments daily at the U for monitoring and lab draws. Her donated kidneys are functioning very well and all is going smoothly. Your donations give us immense peace of mind knowing that we are taken care of and loved. It helps me be a better caregiver and it helps Heather heal and recover. It helps us get back to our lives post-transplant.

The journey continues... we are grateful that you are here with us.

Cheers ~ Jen

Photo Galleries (3)

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July 14, 2022

Our thoughts, love, and gratitude are with you.

Traci & Amy Ireland & Harris

July 13, 2022

Heather I hope you to feeling better soon, I hope you get news on your biopsy.

Charlie Fowler

November 29, 2021

Sending all the love for Heather and Jen (and the furbabies)!!! So excited you were able to receive a transplant and we are rooting for a full recovery! Can't wait to get back on the river with you all!
Much love, the Emersons

Kirstin Emerson