CHICAGO — For seven months, Bears fan Marcus Edwards has relied on dialysis to keep him alive.
“It’s crazy anytime you go into a dialysis clinic,” Edwards said. “You see all these people that have been waiting years for a kidney.”
Edwards, from Jeffersonville, Indiana near Louisville, was added to the transplant list of 113,000 when both of his kidneys stopped working last June.
Five days a week, three hours a day, Edwards is hooked up to lines, trying to buy more time.
With money tight and time slipping, his wife surprised him with Bears tickets for their game against the Lions Nov. 10.
“She bought these tickets and they were just great, close enough to see the grass,” Edwards said.
While at his first game at Soldier Field, Edwards and his wife came across a booth to make signs.
He wrote “I need a kidney” on the sign. It didn’t make it on television, but it did get the attention of a woman sitting next to them.
“At the end of the game, she asks, ‘do you mind if I take your picture?’ Edwards said. “‘We’re gonna make this happen, we’re gonna find you a kidney.’”
The next morning, Edwards picked up his phone to find hundreds of messages.
“It was wildfire,” Edwards said. “Texts from Michigan, Texas, Georgia, North Carolina and Alabama.”
The picture went viral thanks to the stranger sitting next to him.
Edwards is O-Positive. In the last two weeks, the Living Donor Call Center has seen twenty times their normal number of calls from strangers hoping to donate. Thousands of them are O-Positive. Edwards will know within weeks if one might be the match that gives him a second chance at life.
“Now looking back, she couldn’t spend enough for those tickets,” Edwards said. “They were the right tickets at the right spot at the right time.”
To help Edwards, contact the Living Donor Program at 859-323-2467 and tell a transplant coordinator you’re calling on behalf of Marcus Edwards from Indiana.
You can donate to his GoFundMe here.