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Wednesday is National Living Organ Donor Day

Published: Apr. 7, 2021 at 5:42 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -

Many people may not realize they can be an organ donor while they’re still alive, but you can.

For Melanie Taylor, a Facebook post put her in touch with someone who changed her life and possibly saved it.

“I’m not one to normally post a ton of personal stuff online, but I just decided I’m going to put it out there because people do react and people do care that don’t even know,” said Taylor.

Taylor was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease, which runs in her family.

In 2019, she was approved for a transplant.

Jennifer Bowman came across Taylor’s Facebook post and decided she had two healthy kidneys in order to help someone else.

“I didn’t really think about it beforehand, I saw a post on Facebook, from a friend of mine, that his wife needed it, and I didn’t know his wife and I was just kind of curious in the beginning if I would be a match,” said Bowman, “If you think about what the human body does, God gave us two kidneys, we only need one, there are people who live with one kidney, they’re born with one kidney... I think God designed us to help people already.”

Almost one year later, Taylor and Bowman are both healthy, and they have a new family-like bond.

“I’ve got a lot more energy, I feel better on a day-to-day basis, I sleep better, I’m not on a restricted diet anymore,” said Taylor.

“We’re very close, we just had Easter together, it’s been fantastic, it’s a very rewarding feeling to know that you’ve been able to help somebody,” said Bowman.

Taylor added anyone who is curious about being a living organ donor should research it.

“I’m not saying it’s an easy thing to do, but it’s easier than people realize,” Taylor said.

For more information on how to become a living donor, click here.

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