A retired Pennsylvania teacher dying from organ failure had an emotional reaction the moment he learned a former student would be donating one of her kidneys to him.
New Cumberland resident George Labecki, 63, had been experiencing complications from his kidneys since he was a teen but was placed on a transplant list in January 2017 after the organs began to fail, ABC News reported.
Labecki posted an update to his health and quest to find a kidney donor in April, which was then circulated by former colleagues and eventually caught the attention of a student who attended Cedar Cliff High School, where Labecki taught English for 34 years.
“I know this isn’t for everyone. And I’m truly not judgmental over anyone’s decision to step up or not. But if you’re between the ages of 18 and 65 and have normal kidneys, I’d appreciate it if you’d at least consider the option,” Labecki wrote. “It may or may not work out. Lee Ann thought she’d step up for me, but she’s a kidney stone machine.”
I think that each of us has had that one inseparable friend that’s always seemingly there, sometimes unnoticed, and…
Video taken on Oct. 7 shows Lindsay Arnold Wenrich, 34, revealing to Labecki that she was a match and he would soon have a new kidney.
Wenrich, dressed in a lion costume, held up handwritten signs to share the news.
“I’m giving you my kidney,” she told Labecki, who smiled before placing his hands on his hips in disbelief. The pair then hugged after Wenrich took off the mask.
This is surreal and I am overwhelmed, but in a good way. I never expected a small town story like ours to touch not only…
Labecki described Wenrich as an “amazing person.”
“I was stunned,” Labecki told ABC News, calling Wenrich’s good deed a “grand size” gesture. “I was speechless, absolutely speechless.”
Although Wenrich didn’t have Labecki as a teacher, she described him as a popular teacher who everyone knew. She was tested in May and learned in September that she was as match.
“It’s not super often that I see someone I know who needs an organ donor and even though I never had him, Cedar Cliff is a close-knit community,” Wenrich said.
The surgery is scheduled for Oct. 26.
(H/T: ABC News)