The Journey Continues: Toby McElroy

On my journey, Toby McElroy is the only person I know who distinguished himself as a living kidney donor. I was impressed with his selfless Christian example and asked him to share his story.

Common knowledge is kidneys are the most sought-after donor organ usually coming from deceased donors. However, there is an acute availability shortage. Typically, in the United States 13 people a day die because of the lack of a kidney to transplant

“As a child I was taught about Jesus by my grandparents who were all great examples of living as a Christian,” McElroy said. Before my eighth grade year of school I attended youth vacation Bible school, and one night I felt something wash over me and tell me that it was time to accept Jesus as Savior.

His life verse is Luke 10:27.

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind and love your neighbor as yourself.”

“I was not a stranger to kidney disease and its seriousness. When I was 22 my uncle was having health issues primarily because of his kidneys. Many members of our family, including me, wanted to donate a kidney to help him, but I was told I wasn’t a match, so I couldn’t pursue it,” McElroy said. “He never received a kidney and passed away in 1999. I named my first son after him.

“Recently, I was surprised when I discovered that a friend of mine was suffering from kidney disease and needed a donor kidney. We talked about what he needed and I thought that if I wasn’t a match, there was nothing I could do. However, he told me about the Texas Transplant Institute in San Antonio, and how they can match several donors to several recipients so that many lives can be saved. During that time, another friend of ours died from kidney failure. I contacted the Texas Transplant Institute at 210-575-8425 to learn about the Kidney Live Donor Program and started this journey to make sure my friend would be able to get back to a normal life.”

“The procedure requires a lot of testing. The Institute was very thorough, not only to make sure the kidney is viable, but the donor will be physically and mentally well after the surgery. They want to be certain that the donors can cope if anything goes wrong during or after the surgery. I was admitted to Methodist Hospital in San Antonio early one morning and was released the next afternoon. I don’t know who got my kidney, but I do know that my friend is doing well after receiving his kidney.”

“If we love God and others, then everything will fall into place,” he said.

McElroy is married to Christina and a father of five children. He attends First Baptist Church. Live kidney donors are altruistic – a person unselfishly concerned for or devoted to the welfare of others. That is Toby McElroy.

San Marcos Daily Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666