Man, 23, Steps in to Donate Life-Saving Kidney to Girlfriend's Dad: I Would 'Do It Again'
Andrew Mayzak easily put himself in contention for boyfriend of the year
Andrew Mayzak just set the bar very high for boyfriends around the world.
The 23-year-old from New York felt compelled to help when his girlfriend, Ashley Turcotte, told him about her father’s many health problems, he told WHAM. Turcotte explained that her father, Paul Turcotte, was undergoing hours of dialysis multiple times a week due to kidney disease, and was still working to provide for his family.
“From there I did a little research for a couple of weeks, and I ended up telling her that I wanted to get tested to be a potential donor for her father,” Mayzak told the outlet. “Then after about three or four months of testing to become a possible donor, I was approved that I was a match for her father.”
Turcotte, 20, said she was surprised when her boyfriend — whom she had been dating just a short while after meeting online — approached her with the idea.
“I was shocked because I had no idea that this was what he was thinking or that he had thought about this,” she said. “So once I got over the initial shock I was like, this is really great.”
The family told Good Morning America that Paul had been struggling with kidney problems since he was a teenager, but was diagnosed with IGA nephropathy in 2011. The condition, also known as Berger’s disease, occurs when immunoglobulin A builds up in the kidneys, according to Mayo Clinic. Just four years after the diagnosis, Paul was placed on dialysis.
“Not only is Paul suffering, but the family is suffering… I knew I wanted to do something pretty quickly,” Mayzak told GMA.
About 20 people a day die awaiting organ transplants, according to the American Transplant Foundation, and there are over 114,000 people currently on the waiting list to receive a life-saving organ.
“I thought it was like a dream, I really didn’t know what to think, I was more concerned about his health than I was my own, I really was afraid for him,” Paul told WHAM of finding out his daughter’s boyfriend was a match. “[I] was grateful he did that for me and basically saved my life.”
The duo went through with the successful transplant surgeries on October 1.
“I’m just taking it day by day. I do feel good, though,” Paul told GMA of his recovery.
“To see [my dad] happy and healthy, it’s just been really great,” Ashley added. “I can’t thank [my boyfriend] enough.”
Mayzak said he has no regrets about his generous act, and is glad he was able to change the lives of his sweetheart’s family.
“I love her, and I would do anything for her family,” he told WHAM. “I would do it over again. I just wanted to make her family whole again after so many years on dialysis, it was difficult on her, her sister, her mom, the whole family.”