Husband donates kidney to wife on 36th wedding anniversary

PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV/Gray News) – A man in Oregon gave his wife the gift of a miracle on their 36th wedding anniversary – he donated a kidney.

Maureen Stipan has type 1 diabetes that affected her kidneys. Eventually, she was diagnosed with stage four kidney disease.

Her husband, Jim Stipan, said there was no other option but to donate one of his kidneys to his wife.

“When you watch somebody with kidney failure, it’s so painful to watch,” Jim told KPTV.

There was only a small chance Jim would be a match, but he asked to be tested anyway.

Most kidneys are donated from woman to woman or woman to man. It’s rare for a man to donate to a woman because their kidneys are slightly larger.

Testing confirmed there was enough compatibility for Jim to be a match. Their kidney doctor said he had never seen anything like this in his 20 years of practice.

“Our prayers were answered that it was me and it just made everything so simple for our family,” Jim said.

Maureen no longer has kidney disease and saw immediate results from the transplanted organ.

“They said he gave me like a super kidney, like this thing is working overtime,” Maureen said. “I feel so much better I can’t even explain it. And not just to mention the emotional connection because he did that for me.”

Jim and Maureen said they hope to plan a trip to Hawaii to celebrate soon.

Maureen said she should start feeling back to normal in about three months or so, but she’s currently on the recipient list to receive a pancreas to help with her diabetes.

Copyright 2022 KPTV via Gray Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Debra Worley

Debra Worley

Debra Worley joined Gray Television's corporate digital team as the Enterprise Digital Content Manager in May 2021. She had previously overseen all things digital at WECT and Fox Wilmington since 2007.