(WXYZ) - As Michigan residents sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act, there's a Belleville man who actually put off dialysis out of fear he might lose a new job with insurance.
But now he's one of the lucky ones, because after battling kidney disease, he's secured a donor and the ability to pay for a lifesaving transplant.
Three siblings have a family history of kidney disease that dates back to the 1930s when their great-grandmother died from polycysitc kidney disease in her 40s. Its been passed on to every generation since.
Their mother-- Carol Richardson-- was diagnosed at age 18, but still went on to have five children. Like his mom, Rodney was diagnosed at 18 and it's been a downward spiral ever since.
He's only been on dialysis three weeks at the University of Michigan, but needed it 6 months ago. Rodney refused to go until after he secured a new job at Ford Motor Company.
Rodney will undergo a kidney transplant on October 18 thanks to his buddy Carl Shull who he's worked with for 14 years.
"He had always joked around that I would need a kidney someday and he said he would be there if I needed him and just so happened when I needed it, he was there," said Rodney.
And Carl, who is a perfect match, kept that promise.
For the Richardson family and millions of others-- their lives depend on people like Carl and the countless other donors who give of themselves to save another.
There will be a spaghetti dinner fundraiser this Sunday, October 6 to help raise money for Carl Shull at the UAW hall in Flat Rock.
The money will pay his expenses while he recovers for 8 weeks after surgery.
It's $10 a person or you can make a donation payable to the Carl Shull Donor Fund at Credit Union One in West Bloomfield.
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