NEW YORK (WCBS 880/1010 WINS) — A determined Long Island mother decided to go on a year long campaign of diet and exercise in order to give her son a new kidney.
The 14-year-old twin sons of 44-year-old Evette Leavy, of Seaford, and her husband Brian were diagnosed with a rare kidney disease in 2001.
Leavy’s husband Brian was able to donate his kidney to the couple’s son Alan last year at New York-Presbyterian Hospital Weill Cornell.
However, the couple’s other son — Brian — also needed a transplant, but doctors told Leavy she couldn’t become a donor because she was overweight and had gestational diabetes while she was pregnant.
“I was automatically told I wouldn’t be a candidate,” Leavy told 1010 WINS reporter Mona Rivera.
To become a donor, Leavy had to shed some lot of pounds and get healthy fast. The middle school guidance counselor changed her diet and began walking two miles a day in order to give the gift of life to her son.
“I’ve never been determined to do anything as much in my life as I was determined to do this,” Leavy told WCBS 880 reporter Mike Xirinachs.
“You do whatever it takes to make sure you’re child gets what they need,” Leavy told Rivera.
Last month, Leavy was deemed suitable to donate her kidney. She and son Brian underwent successful surgery at Weill Cornell on July 22.
“It wasn’t a sacrifice,” she said. “It was just changing my lifestyle, because it needed to be changed.”
Leavy hopes her story encourages others to donate organs.
“It’s a risk that’s definitely worth taking,” she said. “You’re giving life to someone.”