Friday, July 25, 2008

Kindness of Strangers

Back in January, I wrote about my friend Anthony DeGiulio who was planning on giving one of his kidney's to someone he doesn't know. Well, Anthony finally donated his kidney yesterday and has continued to document his progress on his blog,

It still amazes me that Anthony went to so much trouble to give his kidney to a complete stranger. Apparently, it's pretty hard to do that... there's a lot involved if you're not giving your kidney to a family member or friend who you already know.

I haven't gotten to speak with Anthony yet, but I think he is doing well. I see that he has already posted a blog since his surgery, and today he felt well enough to IM me.

An article will be running in today's Wall Street Journal about him in the Taste column. Here's a preview:

Lots of well-intentioned individuals want to give something of themselves, but few take the project as far as my friend Anthony DeGiulio, a 36-year-old securities trader who yesterday donated a kidney. The really unusual thing is that he gave it to a perfect stranger.

Anthony's been a nice guy for as long as I've known him. We met in the spring of 2006 when he advertised some free mulch on Craigslist. I drove over, and before I knew it he was filling his own trailer, using his own front-end loader and then driving the whole mess over to my place with his own truck. Subsequently, after clearing some land, he gave away thousands of dollars of firewood to all comers. He's also a big supporter of a couple of charitable organizations.

But when he first told me about the kidney, I wondered about his sanity. Anthony has had this response from lots of people, including relatives; after all, only 533 others in this country have ever given a kidney away without a recipient in mind, according to the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network created by Congress in 1984. In other words, Anthony didn't just choose a stranger; he gave a kidney to someone whose identity he didn't even know (although they were scheduled to meet sometime after the surgery).
For the rest of the article, check it out in your Wall Street Journal, or click here.

No comments: