A San Antonio father in dire need of a new kidney has found a creative way to search for a match. The single father is using social media to find a true life-saver.
Joel Remandaban is in the midst of the fight of his life. The single father of two has ESRD (end stage renal disease). His kidneys are failing and he’ll die if he doesn’t get a new kidney soon.
Joel’s on the national donor registry but it could be six years before he receives a kidney. So, in the meantime, he’s turned to the internet to find a match at creating KidneyForJoel.com.
“I’ve gotta live. I’ve gotta live for my kids,” Remandaban said. “When it’s your life that’s at stake and your children’s future lives, you gotta get creative.”
Joel was diagnosed with the disease two years ago, but his health battles began nearly 50 years ago. Joel was born with an autoimmune disease he thought he overcame at 8 years old. But his symptoms returned at 35.
“I had a big belly and swollen legs, so I went to the emergency room,” he recalled.
Joel revamped his diet and lifestyle and lost 72 pounds. Although he got fit, he believes his autoimmune disease led to the ESRD diagnosis.
“You can control it’s progression, but you can’t really stop it,” he said. “I had a wake up call. I had to do something about my health.”
Joel’s living a normal life despite the health crisis. He’s managed to maintain several jobs. He’s a physical therapist and transcribes medical notes while on dialysis in the evenings.
But the need for a kidney weighs heavily on him.
“It’s faith and the will to live for my kids, primarily,” he said. “It’s extremely important. They are my life. Because of them, because of my kids. I have to provide for them.”
For more information about kidney donations, visit KidneyForJoel.com. He says that if he’s able to find a donor, he’ll continue to update the website to help others.