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The Littles

I went through all of the “what-ifs.” What if a family member or my husband needed one? I felt a peace come over me as I said, “And what if I am 80 years old and no one needed my kidney … no good came out of it, and I could have helped someone?”

Scott Little, Elizabethtown, PA | Recipient

In 1986, I was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease, which I inherited from my mother, who had a transplant 26 years ago. In early 2010, I wrote a letter detailing my story, attached it to an email, and sent it to everyone I knew. In July of that year, Denise Tshudy, who I knew casually through our church, showed up on our doorstep to tell me she was a match.

I didn’t realize how bad I felt or how my diseased kidney (which weighed 14 pounds) compromised my body until it was removed and replaced with a healthy one (which weighed less than one pound).

My entire experience with PinnacleHealth has been very good. I highly recommend PinnacleHealth to anyone with whom I speak. I like spending time with my wife Missy (also a living donor), my daughter Morgan, our cat Ripken and our Goldendoodle puppy (he’ll always be a puppy) Isaac.

I am told that one in 100,000 will choose to be evaluated for living donation and actually be healthy enough to donate. Improving those numbers is more than possible. People just need knowledge. I do public speaking on the importance of
organ donation and wish to do even more of that. Good stories need to be told, and this is a VERY good one.


Denise Tshudy, Elizabethtown, PA | Donor

I received a mass e-mail from a woman I knew from church. I didn’t really know Scott other than to say “Hello. How are you?” The e-mail explained that he needed a donor. I immediately thought, “I can do this.” God was directing me, and all I had to do was follow.

I went through all of the “what-ifs.” What if a family member or my husband needed one? I felt a peace come over me as I said, “And what if I am 80 years old and no one needed my kidney … no good came out of it, and I could have helped
someone?” I was so at peace with my decision that I think I would have been devastated if it didn’t work out.

My care was Fabulous! Jeri answered all of my silly questions; she made me feel at ease. Dr. Yang, was so professional yet so down to earth. Everyone in the office, and I mean everyone, is friendly and ready to help. I see Scott from time to time on the train and he and his wife Missy took my husband and I out on our “anniversary” for the donation. I feel great, and I am so
happy that I went through with the surgery.

Barbara Little, York, PA | Recipient

I chose to go to PinnacleHealth, where my son previously had a transplant, because my nephrologist and I had heard a lot of good things about the team of doctors there. Dr. Narins performed my surgery, and my experience was excellent. They always explained things to me and I knew what was going on all the time.

When my son needed a donor, his wife got tested but was not a match. When I needed a kidney, she got tested again and she was a match. I wasn’t scared about having the transplant, but I didn’t know how it would all work out. I had a great support system around me throughout the process.

Before the transplant, I was on PD dialysis for two years and was restricted, it’s the little things you take for granted. My family likes to travel a lot, but I wasn’t able to on dialysis. Having received a kidney, I get up each day and tell myself how good it is to be alive. Now I feel free because I don’t have to follow a schedule and I can do what I want and help others who can’t help themselves. It’s a wonderful gift.

Missy Little, Elizabethtown, PA | Donor

I started looking into becoming a donor when my husband needed a kidney. We weren’t compatible, but when his mother needed one, I was a match. I was not scared at all before the surgery; I was only concerned about making my mother-in-law healthy. Dr. Yang and the entire transplant team were great. They went above and beyond, and my care was very good. I would tell anyone that is thinking of becoming a donor to do it.