Daughter Gives Dad A Father’s Day Gift To Remember: A New Kidney

Jun 26, 2019, 10:33 AM | Updated: 11:29 am

MURRAY, Utah – You could say that Gerald Wayman’s second home is in the hospital.

“I’ve been fighting kidney problems for last 15 years,” he said, due to a genetic kidney disease.

“I’ve had two previous transplants, one for my brother and one from a cousin, but the disease I have continues to attack kidneys,” he added.

Shaleen Martel donated a kidney to her dad, Gerald Wayman.

Shaleen Martel donated a kidney to her dad, Gerald Wayman.

His last transplant was in 2013, and now in need of another kidney, 40 people volunteered to be a donor, but there was no match.

Even though Wayman has eight children, there was concern from doctors that they too could be at risk of the kidney disease.

But as he visited his daughter Shaleen Martel in Wisconsin over Easter, in what he thought was a moment for her to announce she was expecting, he was asked to open a small box that was gift wrapped.

Shaleen Martel donated a kidney to her dad, Gerald Wayman.

Shaleen Martel donated a kidney to her dad, Gerald Wayman.

“And I open it up expecting a little baby something in it and instead there’s a kidney pillow and then I realized I was getting a kidney. But there was a card with it and I didn’t read the card,” Wayman added.

The card told him that his daughter was not only a match, but approved to be his donor.

She has quietly gone through the donor process, several weeks earlier.

“I didn’t want it to be another heartbreaking thing you know just to have hope only to have it taken away again,” she said.

So the day after Father’s day they gathered together to prepare for the transplant, at Intermountain Medical Center in Murray. The transplant was a success. They are now both out of the hospital and recovering.

“It is not all cupcakes and roses after the surgery, but it’s worth it to have my dad a few more years,” she added.

But this connection is more than what a living donor shares with a recipient.

“It’s a special bond, I know many people don’t get the opportunity to share,” Wayman said.

Shaleen Martel donated a kidney to her dad, Gerald Wayman.

Shaleen Martel donated a kidney to her dad, Gerald Wayman.

It’s something even more special between this daddy and his little girl, especially so close to Father’s Day.

“Best one ever,” Wayman said.

“For everyone I think not just for him, it was a Father’s Day gift to share. It has been a sacrifice, but it is the best one I have ever made,” Shaleen added.

A lifesaving gift to keep this family together, for many Father’s Days to come.

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Daughter Gives Dad A Father’s Day Gift To Remember: A New Kidney