CHICAGO — This all started with a Northwestern doctor who cares for patients with kidney failure and decided she wanted to donate one of her own.

Two months ago, Dr. Aleksandra Gmurczyk went into surgery.

Her kidney went to someone she didn’t know — Ginger who lives in Virgina. Ginger’s husband, Gary, wanted to donate but he was not a match for his wife. His kidney went to Arturo Reyes who lives in Chicago.

Two lives saved in this paired exchange. 

Dr. Gmurczyk has been sharing her experience on Tik Tok. She says the surgery and recovery process is easier than one would think. She walked home after a short hospital stay and was back at work two weeks later. 

During a press conference at Northwestern Thursday morning, the Virginia couple logged in through zoom getting to meet with Dr. Gmurczyk and Reyes for the first time. 

“I’m so glad to meet you, I know you’re going to take really good  care of it,” Dr. Gmurczyk said.

Sot -Arturo Reyes/kidney recipient 

“It’s a very emotional journey your life changes completely and I’m just so thankful,” Reyes said.

April is National Donate Life Month and everyone involved is sharing their stories with hopes of inspiring others to become living donors.