OPELIKA, Ala. (WRBL) – The month of April is the time to celebrate the gift of life through organ donations. News 3 is highlighting the ultimate gift, by sharing the incredible story of two East Alabama families, who say their faith and a Facebook post made their story possible.
In the bright sunshine of a beautiful April day, Rachel Kring, Neil Hicks, and their spouses raise the Donate Life flag over East Alabama Medical Center, believing this moment is a testament to God’s faith, hope, and charity.
“Faith got us through a lot of hard nights, hope came in to play and changed everything and charity, well we love Rachel and how her charity changed our lives,” said Jill Hicks
Neil Hicks was on the donor list for a kidney and pancreas for three years. Childhood diabetes left severely ill with dangerously low kidney function. Desperate for living donor, his wife Jill posted their need on Facebook. The post was shared by their pastor’s wife, who happened to be a friend of AU vet school graduate, Rachel Kring.
“I was scrolling through Facebook in my spare time as we all do and I saw the post had been shared by the preacher’s wife at Roanoke Baptist Church for Jill Hicks. Jill was desperate to find a kidney for her husband,” remembered Kring.
Rachel felt called to donate. With the support of her husband, she discovered she was a perfect match. Four months after that original Facebook post, Rachel was giving one of her kidneys and the gift of life to Neil.
“There are no words; they are inadequate. Rachel has given us the gift of life and a second chance so that we may start a family and have a normal life,” said Hicks.
Every year close to 34,000 people receive the gift of life through organ donation. 115,000 men, women and children are waiting for their second chance on an organ and every ten minutes another person is added to the waiting list. If you want to help, experts say speak with your family and make your wishes known.