Shallowater woman receiving kidney from woman who felt 'divine calling' to donate

Shallowater woman receiving kidney from woman who felt 'divine calling' to donate
Melany Conner and Jen Walker
Provided by Melany Walker
Provided by Melany Walker
Provided by Jen Walker
Provided by Jen Walker

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - A Shallowater woman will be receiving the gift of life from a stranger who felt a "divine calling" to donate her kidney.

Melany Conner was diagnosed with kidney disease, and a few months ago she was in the hospital for kidney failure. But on that same day, a Lubbock woman got what she calls a "divine calling" to donate her kidney.

"I really don't know...it was just a thought that kind of popped into my head one day," Jen Walker said. "I didn't think much about it until about a week after that because I started hearing commercials and testimonies about people donating kidneys everywhere."

Jen took that as a sign that she needed to become a kidney donor. After some testing at Baylor All Saints Medical Center in Fort Worth, she was approved. She was so excited, she took to Facebook and posted her acceptance letter. Then she got a message from her old nursing instructor.

"One of my old nursing instructors from nursing school messaged me and asked if I had anyone specific to donate to and I told them no," Jen said. "They told me they knew someone who was in desperate need of a kidney."

Jen's nursing instructor also messaged Melany, who was in need of a transplant.

"Her nursing teacher started messaging me and asked what's your blood type," Melany said. "We might have a kidney for you."

This was the start of a friendship that began with a remarkable coincidence.

"The day it was placed on Jen's heart to donate was actually the exact day I was admitted into the hospital for kidney failure," Melany said. "At one point I still wasn't aware I was going to get a kidney transplant, but it was like God handpicked Jen for me before I ever knew her."

The process wasn't final yet because of an obstacle with the medical center.

"I kind of got bad news at first, they told me since I wanted to change and donate to someone specifically we couldn't do it," Jen said. "They have a policy that you have to know the person or have an emotional connection with the person."

At the time, they just met, but neither gave up.

"It was a couple of days later she got a call that they found her a match," Jen said. "That match happened to be me."

All this, sparking a life long friendship.

"It feels pretty good knowing there's somebody out there whose willing to donate who doesn't even know me to save my life," Melany said.

Jen and Melany are now waiting for their cross match results. Once they receive those, they will be able to set up a surgery date.

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