SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — One Saratoga Springs dad is on the list for a kidney transplant this year, all because of his daughter’s sacrifice. His health issues started 13 years ago when he was diagnosed with kidney cancer in the form of a large tumor.
Keith Plummer and his daughter Bridgette are quite a team. Whether they’re cheering on the Red Sox or coaching a youth basketball team, they always seem to be smiling when they’re together.
“I played softball at Utica in college, and he came out to every single game. And he was having all these health issues, but he still made it a priority to come out and watch me play,” Bridgette said. “He’s just such a wonderful person.”
“During the course of the surgery [to remove the tumor], I lost a lot of blood in the other one,” Keith said. “I damaged that to about 20% of functionality, which kind of left me in a bad situation.”
Four years ago, Keith went on dialysis and no longer had the energy to stay at his job. “He has two grandchildren,” Bridgette said. “I just want them to be able to grow up with him and have them see what I saw and not have him stuck on a dialysis machine.”
Bridgette made it her mission to get her dad a new kidney. After a lengthy testing process, the Plummer family discovered that she wasn’t a match for her dad. Although she was disappointed, Bridgette persisted.
Bridgette qualified for the National Kidney Resistery’s paired donation program. “Paired Exchange” allows family members to donate a kidney to another recipient in exchange for a compatible kidney for a loved one. “To know that someone cares about you that much to give up something like that,” Keith said. “She is a great young woman and is my hero.”
Bridgette donated her kidney to a complete stranger—major surgery at risk of blood loss and infection—to get her dad a kidney in exchange. “The feeling that I helped someone even though I don’t know who they are, it’s something that I never experienced before,” she said.
Keith said he’s on the list to get his kidney by the end of this year, all thanks to Bridgette. “It’s one thing to give me one directly. I get it that would have been lovely, but for her to take that next step and help somebody else,” he said. “And you realize that there’s that much love in the world.”