By Dana Doyle

We appreciate everyone’s prayers and love during our Kidney search. We ask that you continue sending those prayers as Mike Oney and his donors are all on the road to recovery. We are so happy that you have been following our kidney story and we wanted to give an update. Oney received his kidney on September 28, 2021, the best words I’ve ever heard was when they told me, “the kidney has been placed and working great!” With the help of a dear friend and God sent strangers, we gave our Oney a second chance of making this world a brighter place.

Our goal and wish for our story is to have everyone look at “living donor” different, in hopes that more lives can be saved. We have been so blessed and we want to see all those in need get a second chance in life like our family has been blessed. We hope that our story will ignite someone’s courage to become a “living donor” and start the process to help another.

Our story…. K.I.D.N.E. Y Love…. When we found out last year that Oney had Stage 5 Chronic Kidney failure, we never really knew what “living donor” meant until that memorable day. We never gave many thoughts to the words “living donor” or understood how important it was until it hit our home. I remember our first doctor visit where they told us that day that I needed to become Oney’s cheerleader and get out and find him a kidney! We were both thrown back with how the process was so upfront and so abrasive. What was the reason for that blunt behavior? What we learned very quickly was, there are so many people needing organs, that the recipient in need, needs to “work for it” and find someone to help by donating. We were blown away that they wanted us to get out and ask our family and friends to give up something in order to help our family. How in the world can we do this? Let me tell you, it was very easy to do when Oney’s life was on the line. I wanted to be the donor with no questions asked, but my past health issues put me all the way to the bottom of his donor list. Luckily, we had friends that were willing to step up and start the process, but we had one “Angel” that was willing to go all the way! 

My boss and friend of 10 years, Heather was our “Angel” and with no hesitation, concern or fear she stepped up and began the donor process. It’s very important for you to know that the process is not hard, it does however take some doctor visits and your time but if you have the desire to help another, it is a small sacrifice to save a life. After blood work and tests, Heather unfortunately was not an exact blood match which meant if she had the desire to help, she had to choose another way. Her only option was to become a candidate for a “swap” in Oney’s behalf. The easiest way to explain what a “swap” would be is that you go on the search of another donor that would be willing to “swap” to a stranger to help their recipient/loved one find an organ. Although the donating process is very confidential, we did find out that our Kidney came from and delivered to a donor/recipient in Connecticut. That just shows that the need for so many is such a wide area. A kidney swap between Kentucky and Connecticut, how amazing is that blessing?!

We are just so thankful for how blessed we have been to find our kidney so quickly and how UK Hospital Kidney Transplant doctors and nurses were amazing for us during this life changing experience. It’s funny how God puts you on paths and you wonder, “why am I here?” Well, what we have learned this past year, God knows exactly where we all need to be and what paths we all need to be on. You never know when a friend or a perfect stranger would be willing to step up when your life is on the line.

So today, we celebrate a second chance at life for Oney, and we applaud all those courageous, fearless donors that never gave a second thought to step up and help our family.

Thank you all for being part of our journey and when you see our Oney always remember it took a “living donor” to keep him with us! Praise God for giving that special fearless person the desire to become a “living donor”.

If you would like to send Oney a get-well card to keep his spirits up, please go right ahead, he would love that! He has a long way to go in his recovery, but we know with the prayers of our family friends he will improve with each month that comes our way. Mike Oney 327 Peak Lane Cynthiana, KY 41031

With all our love, we say THANK YOU for giving us your prayers all these months! God heard and now our Oney is in recovery with an amazing new kidney!!!

~ Oney and Dana