A former News4 photographer who got a lifesaving kidney transplant from his wife in 2009 needs another donation as that kidney is failing.
"I would not be here if it wasn’t for her,” Ron Minor said. “I'd have been gone long ago."
After that transplant, Minor wanted to give back by shooting and financing a documentary called “I Didn’t Know” that tells the African American community that diabetes and high blood pressure puts them at high risk of kidney failure. Minor’s friend, James Brown of CBS Sports, narrated.
In 2019, Minor had what should have been routine back surgery.
"Two weeks later I got sepsis that attacked the kidney right away,” he said.
His wife, Kathy, is scared because he needs a second kidney transplant.
"Now I’m very upset because my body part inside of Ron is failing,” she said. “It kept him alive for almost 12 years, but now, it’s, it’s very upsetting.”
Minor is on dialysis three days per week, for four hours each day. It cleans his blood of waste and water and keeps him alive while he searches for a second kidney donor.
“That’s the only thing saving your life, so getting a kidney would be the greatest thing in the world for me,” he said.
Dr. Joseph Keith Melancon of the George Washington Transplant Institute says donated kidneys can last 15 to 20 years, but Minor’s infection makes getting a second transplant a race against time.
"What can happen over the time of being on dialysis is that something like heart attack or stroke could either take his life or at least incapacitate him to the degree that he’s no longer a transplant candidate," Melancon said.
Ron and Kathy Minor say if you have it in your heart to donate a kidney, contact the George Washington Transplant Institute. If the kidney isn’t a match for Ron Minor, it may save someone else’s life. Find more information on being a living donor here, or call 202-715-5024.