Kidney Transplant Recipients Meet Donor’s Family

April is "National Donate Life Month"

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Roberto Ramirez and Alfredo Rojo met the family of organ donor Parker County Sheriff Sgt. Rusty Arnold. Both men received a kidney from Arnold who was killed in an accident just before Christmas 2010. (Published Friday, Apr 20, 2012)

    An emotional reunion in Fort Worth Thursday after two transplant recipients met with the family of the man who gave them a second chance.

    Until today, Roberto Ramirez and Alfredo Rojo were once complete strangers to LouAnn Arnold and her family.

    Their bond? Parker county sheriff Sergeant Rusty Arnold, the man who saved Roberto and Alfredo's lives her son.

    It was days before Christmas 2010 when Rusty's life ended in a Springtown intersection.

    He was killed when the car he was in was struck from behind.

    A Christmas tragedy for Rusty's family, turned to be miracle for Roberto and Alfredo.

    Rusty was an organ donor.

    He said he wanted to be an organ donor so it's not surprising,” LouAnn Arnold said. “He wanted to do what he could for mankind, I am glad he did.”

    After years of suffering from kidney failure and undergoing dialysis, each father received one of Rusty's kidneys.

    "Thank you to him for giving us new lives," Alfredo Rojo said. "The doctors told me 'you got no chance.'"

    More than 100,000 Americans are waiting for lifesaving transplant. Just one organ donor can save the lives of eight people.

    "It is bittersweet, we're sad, we're still grieving but on the other hand it's joyous to meet somebody that rusty helped," Arnold said.

    Thursday's reunion was made possible by LifeGift and the Texas Health Harris Methodist hospital in Fort Worth.

    April is "National Donate Life Month," a time to recognize organ donors and recipients.