It all started with a bone marrow drive that Jeramy Davies hosted in 2010 while he was in college. He registered with and five years later, he got a call to be a donor for a 27-year-old woman with lymphoma and he did the donation. Privacy rules kept him from knowing who she was for a year, but when he could, he reached out and met the recipient, Kelly Ribeiro and the two became friends, keeping in touch through emails and texts.
During the years after the stem cell transplant, Jeramy’s wife Laura was diagnosed and treated for a brain tumor, but she died in 2017. His friendship with Kelly helped him cope during that dark time in his life and he even planned a road trip to finally meet his buddy in person for the first time. But when Jeramy learned from Kelly’s mom that she had gone into kidney failure as a result of chemo and had been on dialysis three times a week, he immediately offered up one of his kidneys. And since she already had his stem cells, he was a 100% match, which is as good as it gets for a transplant.
They had a successful kidney transplant on December 18th and Jeramy saved Kelly’s life once again. She immediately felt better and because she’s a genetic match with him, she may not need to take anti-rejection medication now.
“He’s given me a shot at normalcy again,” she says. “ I don’t know how to say thank you enough.”