“Everyday 13 People Die Waiting for a Kidney.” —National Kidney Foundation
In the US, 123,000 people are hoping to have a life-extending kidney transplant. I am one of them. My name is Manuel “Max” Freedman, and I am in end-stage-renal-disease. A kidney transplant through a living donor is my best hope for survival at this time. I am writing this letter to ask for your help.
Born in St. Louis, MO, I grew up in the suburb of University City, where I graduated high school. I earned a BA degree from Stanford University, in Stanford, California and lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for exactly forty years. I am the third eldest of six children, and have two children and one grandchild by marriage, who all live in Boulder, Colorado.
In January 2012, I saw the first signs that my kidneys were not working. By August 12, 2012, I became deathly ill. I now live with failed kidneys. A primary function of the kidneys is to filter liver-generated poisons out of the body. My kidneys, however, were shutting down. My usually high energy decayed to the point where I could hardly move. I stopped regular daily walks. I could not keep my eyes open. All I wanted to do was sleep. On errands, I would sit in the car watching all the people coming out of and going into the stores. I envied their ability to walk briskly. What had happened to me? Unable to work or stay awake, I was adrift in a slow-motion descent into oblivion.
Though somewhat retired, I do not believe I shall ever fully retire. I have a lifelong love of movies and have been in the movie business for many years. As a filmmaker and screenwriter, I am able to give something of myself back by helping beginners to make progress in a very difficult field. A septuagenarian, I have the outlook and energy of a teenager. I have been practicing Yoga and T’ai Chi Chuan for almost fifty years, and enjoyed a vegetarian diet until I got sick. All that helps keep me healthy. I love to walk in the mountains and woods, and, when in town, try to walk as many places as is practical. The fact is that, according to doctors and nurses who attended to me, these healthful lifestyle habits over many decades kept me alive through five nearly fatal medical emergencies, as a result of my failed kidneys.
My best hope for long-term health and survival is to obtain a kidney transplant, specifically from a living donor. The reason for this is that recipients of living donations experience longer and healthier survival rates than those derived from kidneys transplanted from cadavers. I now endure long dialysis treatments three days per week, equivalent to a part time job. My purpose in making this appeal to the public is to see if I can find a living donor of a kidney, and to help with the financial burden related to my transplant surgery. As I have undergone extensive medical testing to be actively listed at Presbyterian St. Luke’s Hospital in Denver, CO, potential donors should call 720-754-2155 and ask to speak to the on-duty Transplant Coordinating Nurse. While I wait for my surgery, co-pays and deductibles continue to add up. Medications, caregiver fees, health insurance premiums, medical appointments, travel, meal and lodging expenses, laboratory costs, and out-of-pocket expenses are more than I can handle on my limited income. I will also be required to take costly post-transplant medications that I will need to stop rejection for the rest of my life.
Manuel has chosen to fundraise with HelpHOPELive in part because HelpHOPELive assures fiscal accountability of funds raised and tax deductibility for donors. Donors can be sure that funds donated will be used only to pay or reimburse medically-related expenses. To make a tax-deductible donation to this fundraising campaign, click on the Donate Now button. For more information, please contact HelpHOPELive at 800.642.8399. Please consider a contribution and donating the gift of life through becoming my living kidney donor.
Gratefully, Manuel “Max” Freedman
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