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‘Need kidney 4 wife’: A husband’s mission on the street

Wayne Winters wore a sign asking drivers to donate a kidney for his wife. (KSL)
LISTEN: Devoted husband tells Dori walking miles a day to find his wife a kidney was worth it

When Wayne Winters’ wife Deanne had medical trouble, he knew what to do — he hit the road in search for help.

“Her kidney, she thought it had quit,” Winters told KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson. “She was pretty miserable. She went on dialysis. That was a rough experience.”

“I googled ‘need kidney for wife,’ and here’s this guy walking along the roadway wearing the sign ‘Need kidney 4 wife’ … it worked getting the news media involved,” he said.

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So that’s what this 74-year-old Utah husband did. He made a sign stating he needed a kidney for his wife who was suffering from stage 5 kidney failure. He got dressed up in a suit and tie, not to mention a nice hat, then started walking with that sign for about 2 miles along a heavily-trafficked roadway in his hometown of Farr West.

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Wayne Winters wore a sign asking drivers to donate a kidney for his wife. (KSL)

He did this every day during commute times. Winters said that drivers would stop and talk with him, asking how they could help, or just wanting to know his story.

“This lady came by, she got out of her car,” he said. “She’s crying … and says, ‘You’re doing the right thing. Can I take your picture?’ She took my picture, front and back … she wrote up a real nice story and sent it to KSL (Radio).”

His story went viral and Winters spoke with a range of media, asking audiences for a kidney. In the meantime, the Winters got a few calls from their doctor, notifying them that a kidney had become available. They would get prepared for surgery only to find out that the organ wasn’t a match. This week, however, it was. Within a day of getting a call about an available kidney, Winter’s wife was out of surgery with a new organ.

“She’s such a quality woman,” Winters said. “Good cook. She can season foods to really tweak my taste buds. Overall, she’s a good woman. She helps the neighborhood. We were both teachers … she would put in long hours with her elementary school.”

“She’s a beautiful woman and that helps,” he said. “I just love her.”

 

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