Retired Police Officer in Need of a Kidney Learns His Former Partner Is a Perfect Match
"My kidneys are right now the size of two NFL footballs," Stanley Barsch told WTOP. "They're about 15 to 20 pounds apiece."
The former Maryland police officer is battling polycystic kidney disease (PKD), a genetic disease making cysts grow in his kidneys and causing them to swell. This change in size can reduce kidney function and even lead to failure.
In need of a transplant, in January Barsch put out a call to friends on social media.
One of the people who came across Barsch's plea was fellow retired police officer Megan Ambrose—his former beat partner with the Montgomery County Police.
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Unbeknownst to Barsch or his family, Ambrose got tested to find out if she could be a match. And match she did!
With an astonishing 100% compatibility, Ambrose surprised Barsch at his home on Valentine's Day, which is also National Organ Donor Day. She handed her former partner a card with the excellent news.
"So, I heard urine need of a kidney," the card reads. "Want mine? Turns out that we are a perfect match… Not only on the job but in blood and organs too. You always had my back on the road and off. Now you can have my kidney."
Barsch shared a video of his emotional reaction on Facebook.
Ambrose even got in touch with Barsch's transplant coordinators to set up surgery. The pair are scheduled to go under the knife in May.
Barsch will have both kidneys removed, and Ambrose's left kidney will be transplanted on his left side.
"I knew her blood matched, but I had no idea that she was a 100% match. It's unheard of for someone other than a sibling," he told WTOP. "It is amazing and no doubt godsend."