South Jersey mayor finds possible donor via Facebook, billboard
The family of Brigantine mayor Andy Simpson used a billboard on the White Horse Pike in Atlantic City to help him find a kidney donor. The mayor has end stage renal disease.
His children also started a Facebook page to solicit a donor and those combined efforts appear to have paid off, The Philadelphia Inquirer reports an apparent match has been found in “one of the family’s closest friend."
The Simpson family owns a liquor store and typically uses two billboards to promote the store. They changed one of them to a plea for a kidney for the family patriarch listing his blood type and an email address.
According to the Inquirer, the possible donor is actually a neighbor of Simpson who used to babysit his kids; her name is Dena Kabala and they are awaiting the results of one last test to make sure she is a match. The family told the Inquirer that while the billboard was helpful, more applicants came through because of the Facebook page. The got over 50 applications, but only two made it past the application phase with the rest almost immediately being rejected as unsuitable.
For most people in need of a kidney, the waiting list spans years.