This all started when a 34-year-old patient decided to search for a donor he needed right in his hometown in Glastonbury.
“I’m looking forward to just going back and living a regular life again,” said Nick Kalogeros.
Nick Kalogeros has been worrying about his kidney for 20 years. When he needed a donor, his family took to Glastonbury coffee shops to share his story. Then he got not one, but two matches. His cousin and a complete stranger.
“I was fortunate enough to not only do Nick’s transplant after I had obtained the kidney from Tyler, but also did the donation operation for Judi and eventually sent her kidney to Arizona where it was successfully transplanted,” said Dr. Oscar Serrano, Hartford HealthCare.
They all gathered for the first time Tuesday over Zoom. During the pandemic many elective surgeries were postponed. But Nick and his now two donors moved forward anyway.
“Having never had surgery before I didn’t know what to expect and frankly within a couple of days I was up and walking around. And within a couple of weeks I was back at work,” said Tyler Kalogeros-Treschuk, Washington, D.C.
“In my mind I was going to have my family around me when we did this and that’s not how it turned out. It turned out to be fine anyway,” said Judi Edwards, Glastonbury.
Doctors ended up sending Judi’s kidney to a recipient in Arizona.
Meanwhile, Nick is beyond grateful for the gift of life and he’s gearing up to drive for the first time this week.
“It’s five weeks on Thursday since the surgery and things couldn’t have gone smoother for me,” said Kalogeros. “I want to thank everybody for doing this for me. It’s basically another lease on life for me.”