Living with kidney disease from age 5 has transformed Hastings resident Janelle Ham into a fighter.
Her 23-year-old daughter Hillary is proving to be just like her.
Having had both kidneys removed by age 17, Janelle, 57, had relied on a deceased donor kidney to keep her alive for 39 years.
When that kidney failed in November 2013, her only options were dialysis and waiting for a replacement kidney on the kidney donor register, a process that can take one to two years before an organ becomes available.
Seeing her mother in a helpless situation, Hillary offered to be tested to see if she may be a match. If not, her older brother, Justin, was next in line.
As fate would have it, Hillary was a match. And, despite her mother’s initial opposition to the idea, she will be donating a kidney to her in a transplant procedure slated for Wednesday at University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha.
A fundraiser dinner event arranged by family members through Peace Lutheran Church, 906 N. California Ave., will help offset escalating medical and travel expenditures for the family. The meal will be served from 4-7 p.m. Sunday at the church.