June 8 - Recipient
Austin Lee, 21
Austin Lee had his first kidney transplant as a young child, but got sick in 2007, and was put on the list for another transplant. Since then, he has received peritoneal dialysis at home every evening and overnight for 12 hours. Before his condition prevented him from being active in sports, he participated in the U.S. Transplant Games, an event for children and teens with all types of transplants. He won gold in cycling in 2004, and also competed in swimming, bowling, basketball, and volleyball.
He credits his mother with his success and is grateful to her for being his first kidney transplant as a child. He does not remember his first transplant, but being sick as a teen has changed his views on health and caring for others. He is eager to meet his donor, to whom he is grateful for a second chance at life that he says he will put to the service of other patients with similar conditions.
Mr. Lee was able to participate in the exchange because the two non-directed donors and one deceased donor made additional kidneys available. He is a graduate of Sanford-Brown Institute, where he earned his certificate as a Medical Assistant. His goal is to work with teens with kidney conditions, and he is sure that his experience will help them understand the importance of keeping up with their treatment.