George "Weldon"
Swearingen, Jr.

Living Donor
San Antonio, TX
Date Of Donation: 3/10/81
Hospital: Wilford Hall Medical Center

My name is David Swearingen and this is the story of my kidney transplant. I am the youngest of three boys. My life was pretty normal, until the spring of 1979. During a routine physical, at 16 years old, it was determined I had too much protein in my urine. I was sent to Carswell Air Force Base in Ft. Worth, Texas for testing. After a kidney biopsy, I was informed I had a kidney disease, glomerulonephritis, and would eventually need a kidney transplant. After testing all my family members, it was determined my brother, Weldon, was the best match for the transplant. Thank God, Weldon was willing to be my donor whenever that time arrived. I was able to live a normal life until a few weeks into my second semester in college (January 1981,) when my kidney function took a drastic turn for the worse. The kidney disease had caused my kidneys to fail and it was necessary for me to go on dialysis for 6 weeks.

 

In March 1981, Weldon, and I were both admitted to Wilford Hall Medical Center on Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. I was 18 years old and my brother was 21 years old. Weldon showed no fear and for him to voluntarily donate a kidney to his brother, without hesitation, was such a heroic and loving gesture. After final tests were run, the transplant was set for March 10, 1981. I will remember that date forever. It is like an additional birthday to me. It is the day my brother gave me a second chance at a happy, normal and productive life. God blessed me with this wonderful brother. My brother healed well and has never had any problems related to having only one kidney. I too healed well and have never gone thru any rejection episodes. Since the transplant, I have lived a normal life. I have to take anti-rejection medication for as long as I have this kidney. Hopefully, that will be for the rest of my life. Now, over 30 years later, my brother, Weldon, and I are doing well. Weldon became a father and raised 3 fine children and has always been able to work. I have a wonderful 19 year old son. I have worked full-time since shortly after the transplant. I am thankful to God for blessing me with a loving, supportive family and a giving, unselfish brother. I am also grateful to God

for giving the surgeons and medical staff the skill and knowledge to perform this successful transplant.

 

My brother, George "Weldon" Swearingen, Jr. is a true hero. He changed my life forever and gave me a second chance at a happy, prosperous life. The bond we have between us remains very strong. Weldon is a very humble man and he does not speak of this wonderful thing he has done for me very often. He has always been the type of person who wants to help someone in need. The world would be a much brighter place if more people were like Weldon.

 

Please consider being an organ donor. You can register to be an organ donor at www.donatelifetexas.org. May God bless you as he has blessed me.
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