Mary's Medical Fund

Mary Austin is a beloved mother to three, grandmother to nine, and is a caring nurse at Carle Clinic in Champaign, Illinois.

Mary has helped thousands of people in her twenty five-year career as a nurse, but now she needs help of her own.

Mary suffers from a hereditary condition known as polycystic kidney disease (PKD). Over time, the kidneys of people with PKD become enlarged and full of cysts, causing loss of function and eventual failure. Their kidneys become the size of footballs instead of the normal fist-sized healthy kidneys. The only treatments for PKD are dialysis and transplantation. Now is Mary's time. Her kidney function is only 18% and dropping, and she needs a kidney transplant.

2392004_1413646[phone redacted]_funddescription.

As she began all the doctor's visits to prepare for a future kidney transplant, doctors discovered she also has the most serious associated complication of PKD. Mary has a brain aneurysm. Luckily, it is an operable aneurysm, located directly behind her eye between to two brain hemispheres. Unluckily the shape of the aneurysm will require an open craniotomy rather than the much less invasive method of inserting a coil to repair the blood vessel.

If you know anything about transplants, you know that a person's immune system will be compromised (no longer functioning well) with all the anti-rejection medications that are required after surgery. It is essential that Mary's brain surgery happen before her kidney transplant so she can take advantage of her currently healthy immune system. She is on the kidney transplant list but "on hold" because the transplant team will not allow her to accept a kidney donation until the brain aneurysm is fixed. After that, she can move on and prepare for the challenges of finding and receiving a kidney.

This all presents some very serious financial difficulties. With no complications, Mary will be required to take approximately three months off of work following her brain surgery. It takes a lot of time for the brain to heal. When she finds a kidney, she'll need another three months off of work to recover. It also takes a lot of time to heal after an organ transplant.

We really have no idea what Mary's personal medical costs will total when everything is done, but what we do know is that without short term disability insurance, Mary will soon need at least six months of income replaced.

This fund will be used for many different expenses that Mary and her family will need covered. There are a myriad of expenses associated with a crisis like this - many of them not covered under any compensation plan, such as mortgage and car payments, vet bills, family travel and hotel fees (the transplant hospital is four hours away), meals, etc.

Please help by donating whatever you can. Even if you can't donate much, please share this page and help spread the word.

While you're at it, please consider live kidney donation! If you can't donate a kidney directly to Mary, you may be able to donate as part of a Paired Kidney Donation chain where your kidney goes to someone else's family and their kidney comes to ours. Unfortunately, at least one of Mary's children cannot donate because he also has this terrible disease and will eventually need a transplant of his own.

2392004_1413669[phone redacted]_funddescription.

2392004_1413669[phone redacted]_funddescription.

From all of Mary's immediate family that will be directly affected by your generosity, THANK YOU.

Mary's kids:
Anthony, Sarah, John
Kari, John's wife. Holly, Anthony's wife.

2392004_1413670[phone redacted]_funddescription.

2392004_1413669[phone redacted]_funddescription.

2392004_1413670[phone redacted]_funddescription.

Mary's nine grandchildren!!!
Zachary, Ben, Gabe, Rachel, Perry Jr. (Sarah's kids)
Charlotte, Nathan (Anthony & Holly's kids)
Cameron, Kiley (John and Kari's kids)

2392004_1413669[phone redacted]_funddescription.

2392004_1413669[phone redacted]_funddescription.


 See top
  • Diversion Office 
    • $170 (Offline)
    • 78 mos
  • Maggie  
    • $25 (Offline)
    • 78 mos
  • Becca Spake 
    • $100 
    • 78 mos
  • Charles King 
    • $25 
    • 78 mos
  • Kim Williams  
    • $20 
    • 78 mos
See all


Holly Hamilton 
Champaign, IL
  • #1 fundraising platform

    More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more

  • GoFundMe Guarantee

    In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more

  • Expert advice, 24/7

    Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more