Son selflessly gives up university dream to donate kidney to his father

Twenty five-year-old Darren Martin can forget about the Christmas shopping this year as he has already given his father the best present he could ever receive, and it wasn’t even his birthday.

Young Darren has turned down a university place in Austria where he could pursue a Masters in German so he could donate one of his kidneys to his father Liam who was suffering from kidney failure.

While running the home farm, Liam was also on home dialysis for 10 hours a night and it was a real struggle for him. Then things got even worse when Liam picked up a bad infection and he had to switch to hospital dialysis.

After this, Liam had to travel to Limerick three times a week for hospital haemodialysis treatment which made things harder for him at home.

Wanting to help his dad any way he could, Darren decided to get tested to see if he could give his dad one of his kidneys. Thankfully for the family, Darren was a match and the transplant took place last April at Beaumont Hospital, Dublin.

Darren said the recovery was quick for both of them and they were soon back on their feet. “It was great to be able to help him by giving him a kidney as he now has a new lease of life.”

Darren now works in commercial finance with the Kerry Group at its Naas office and his dad is back rambling around the farm with bits of blue twine and a sheep dog.

This is just one of many transplant stories that take place every year in hospitals across the country. Liam and Darren’s story is one of 33 living kidney transplants that took place last year.

Organ Donor Awareness week which is running from April 2 to April 9 is hoping to raise awareness about the ongoing and ever increasing demand for organ transplantation.

The key message is to carry a donor card if you are willing to donate and permit Code 115 on your driver license as well as downloading the Smartphone App.

Approximately 550 people in Ireland are currently awaiting life saving transplants and thanks to transplants over 3,000 people are enjoying extended lives.

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