Journey for a Kidney

Dear Friend,

What if you were living on borrowed time?

Ernest Nelson is awaiting a new lease on life. In 2017, he battled renal cell carcinoma, a rare kidney cancer. Since then, his kidney function has declined. He now faces Stage-5 kidney disease and end-stage renal failure. Unfortunately, kidney disease runs in his family. Ernest is now on dialysis seven days a week for 11 hours a day, which leaves him tired and takes a toll on his quality of life. Doctors say a kidney transplant is necessary.

During this difficult time, Ernest is thankful for the love and support of his wife of 22 years, Vicki, and their family and friends. Ernest and Vicki have two children, and are now raising their two granddaughters.  Ernest’s health prevents him from being the active husband, father, and grandfather he longs to be. He enjoys spending time with his family, fishing, relaxing at home, and traveling—but his health and dialysis schedule limit his activities now. Ernest looks forward to receiving a transplant that will free him from dialysis and give him back his energy. He wants nothing more than to be healthy so he can live his life to the fullest, have a more active lifestyle, and enjoy many more years with his family. But right now, he needs your help. 

Unfortunately, Ernest’s hope for a new life comes at a very high price.

The average kidney transplant costs more than $414,000, and that’s only the beginning. Even with insurance, which will cover a portion of the transplant costs, he still faces significant expenses related to the surgery. For the rest of his life, he will need follow-up care and anti-rejection medications. Post-transplant medications are expensive, and they’re as critical to his survival as the transplant itself. Ernest lives 118 miles from his transplant center, and traveling back and forth for appointments can be expensive. When he receives his transplant, he will have to stay nearby while he recovers, incurring substantial expenses for travel, food, and lodging. Ernest’s illness forced him to stop working, further adding to his financial burdens.

What if your life depended on the compassion and generosity of others?

We are trying to help relieve the growing burden of expenses for Ernest.  Your gift—of $25, $50, $100 or more—will enable us to provide Ernest with the financial support he desperately needs.

You can help in the following ways:

1.  Donate!  
2.  Share this fundraiser to raise money and awareness of our need.
3. Get tested to be a donor.  Being a donor is simple and recovery is very simple.  Donors are released from the hospital the next day on Tylenol.  

Many Thanks!

P.S. Want to help Ernest even more? Ask your company if they will match your gift.


  • David and Tricia Holton 
    • $100 
    • 7 mos
  • Peter Young 
    • $50 
    • 7 mos
  • Salina Clark 
    • $100 
    • 7 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $30 
    • 8 mos
  • Barbara Wallace  
    • $100 
    • 8 mos


Vicki Nelson 
Camden, SC
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