In 2007, Andrew’s dad Tay was diagnosed with a kidney disorder and almost immediately he was told he’d need a kidney transplant. Eventually, the need became a “now”. Without hesitation, both of his son’s stepped up to be donors, both were good matches, but Andrew was a slightly better match.(Photo: NBC Charlotte)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — From an early age Tay and Cindy McDonald knew their son Andrew would grow up and do something great. But what would it be? And when might it happen?
In 2007, Andrew’s dad Tay was diagnosed with a kidney disorder and almost immediately he was told he’d need a kidney transplant. Eventually, the need became a “now”. Without hesitation, both of his son’s stepped up to be donors, both were good matches, but Andrew was a slightly better match.
That great moment was now here.
Tay says, “At first, I didn’t want him to, I couldn’t imagine putting my son though that.”
Andrew chimes in saying, “I was just ready to do it, and my younger brother was ready to do it, too, and he’s my younger brother– that was huge, we just wanted to get our dad healthy again.”
The kidney transplant surgery wasn’t easy, it was lots of pain and a slow recovery for Andrew, but his Dad had a rapid improvement,; the kidney transplant was a success.
Tay says of his son, “He’s a great young man, whom I love very much, who is my hero.”
Shortly after the surgery, Andrew began getting bills, lots of them. It was odd since they were told the donor doesn’t pay anything, ever. Still, the bills came despite promises by CMC to get it fixed. “Collection” was even mentioned and that’s when Andrew’s mom Cindy took action.
Cindy said, “I emailed you and I think it was the next day or two days and I heard from the hospital and you that it was taken care of and we didn’t get another bill.”
But the real fixer here isn’t NBC Charlotte, it’s the brave young man sitting next to his dad on the couch, the one who quite literally gave part of himself to keep the family together.
Tay says of the act, “I can’t think of words, it was amazing.”
Mistakes sometimes happen and that’s what the billing error was: a mistake. The McDonalds say they can’t thank their transplant team enough, and can’t stress enough the importance of being a donor.
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