Donnie's Kidney Transplant
On July 25, 2012 the Whitelaw’s lives changed forever. Don Whitelaw was working out of town and had come home for a few days. He wasn’t feeling good, experiencing some heart palpitations & went to the urgent care. After the exam and blood work, the doctor told Don he was extremely anemic, he needed to go home to bed rest and start taking iron. That evening at 8:00PM the phone rang and that was the call they will never forget. The nurse told Don “get to the hospital immediately because you are going into renal failure.” Yvonne rushed Don to Sentara Princess Anne Hospital where he was admitted and spent over a week going through multiple tests to find out what was happening. Yvonne never left his side. The initial diagnosis was hypertension. The second day at the hospital, Don started dialysis and their journey began. They were educated on what to expect with Don’s new life on dialysis and the unknown had the family extremely worried. Don was discharged on August 1, 2012 with a diagnosis of End Stage Renal Disease. He immediately started dialysis at Davita on an outpatient basis, this became very time consuming and depressing so he began at home dialysis. On November 16, 2012 Don met with the transplant surgeon to determine if he was a candidate for a kidney transplant, which thankfully he was. Don’s life has had some really up moments and some really down moments, but through it all he has kept his head up and continued to work to support his family.
So the journey began in finding a donor for Don. On July 5, 2016, his daughter, Kaleigh, found out she was a perfect match to give her daddy a kidney. This was an extremely emotional time for the family with the uncertainty of how this would affect her life. After getting assurance from the doctors that Kaleigh would be able to live a normal life, get married & have children, the wheels were set in motion to proceed with this beautiful gift of life.
The surgery is scheduled for Tuesday, December 13, 2016. Kaleigh will be in one operating room having her kidney removed and 2 hours later Don will be in another operating room to receive the kidney. Each procedure will take 4 hours. They will both be in the hospital probably until Saturday. Yvonne will be taking off work the entire week to be by her family’s side in the hospital and once they are home she will need to take more time off. With all the time spent going to doctor’s appointments for both her & Don and all of life’s other unexpected events, Yvonne has no vacation time left to use, meaning no money will be coming in from her work during this crucial time she needs to be with her family. Medical bills are increasing for them and with Kaleigh not able to work either, they will be taking care of Kaleigh’s medical bills. Don will continue to receive a standard paycheck, but no overtime.
Don, Yvonne & Kaleigh are family to many of us, always there for everyone no matter what. They have made an impact on many of our lives in so many ways. As the medical bills will be increasing even more and Yvonne won't be getting pay for anytime she needs to take off from work, we would appreciate any help you may be able to offer this awesome family, whether it be monetary, spiritual or emotional. Thank you from the Whitelaw’s and their entire family.
With Kaleigh not working until late January & Don going to be out of work for awhile, Yvonne is still having to take time off from work, with no vacation time, to take care of them & drive both Kaleigh & Don to their appointments.
Let's make the start of 2017 a great one for the Whitelaw's. Anything you may be able to offer, spiritually, emotionally or by donating to this Go Fund page to help offset medical bills, household bills, etc. will be greatly appreciated.
Happy New Year to all of you from The Whitelaw's and their family & friends.