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Outpouring of Support for Local Elementary School Teacher Fighting Kidney Disease

Emily Progin, PR and Communications Coordinator

[email protected] / 800.642.8399

Release: Immediate


Altoona Community Helping Zach Noel Receive the Gift of Life

ALTOONA, Pa.–Husband, father, brother, son, friend, teacher…and kidney disease warrior. The Altoona community is rallying to provide help and hope to 30-year-old elementary school teacher Zach Noel as he fights back against kidney disease and prepares to receive a life-changing kidney transplant.

Zach has been living with diabetes since he was twelve. Today, the disease has deteriorated his kidney function to the point of kidney failure: Zach must receive a kidney transplant to live a healthy life. Husband of Kim and father of 1-year-old Cora, Zach has been living in the Altoona area all his life. He is a beloved elementary school teacher in the Altoona School District at Juniata Gap Elementary.

Since they learned that he would need a transplant to combat kidney disease, the community has rallied to support Zach. “I am so humbled and thankful by the support we’re getting so far,” said Zach. “This community is giving our family hope as we take on this journey together.”

When they realized the drastic out-of-pocket financial burden of a kidney transplant, the Noel family turned to the nonprofit Help Hope Live to start fundraising. View the campaign in honor of Zach at:

Zach’s fundraising page includes loving comments from friends, co-workers, students and strangers:

“We will be praying for you.”

“You are loved by so many.”

“Get well soon, Mr. Noel!”

An upcoming Cornhole Tournament will provide additional support for Zach’s fundraising campaign. Join the community on Saturday, July 31 from noon to 8 p.m. at Legion Park in Hollidaysburg for cornhole, music, food, raffles, and more. Details:

Funds raised will assist with out-of-pocket costs ranging from co-pays to medications to transplant-related travel so that Zach can focus on his recovery. Unlike with GoFundMe, donations made to Help Hope Live in honor of Zach are tax deductible for donors and won’t jeopardize any state-based benefits. Help Hope Live also verifies medical and financial need for every patient and can pay transplant-related costs directly for full transparency.

You can make a donation at any time at or receive more information about Zach’s campaign by calling Help Hope Live at 800-642-8399.

Based in Radnor, Pa., Help Hope Live is a national nonprofit that specializes in engaging communities in secure, tax-deductible fundraising campaigns for people who need a transplant or are affected by a catastrophic injury or illness. Since 1983, campaigns organized by Help Hope Live have raised over $150 million to pay patient expenses. ###

Written by Emily Progin