Kidney transplant gives Congers volunteer firefighter a new lease on life
A volunteer firefighter from Rockland County got the lifesaving medical care he needed this week.
Frank Voce is in good spirits with a new kidney at Hackensack Medical Center. Early Monday morning, the 61-year-old from Congers got the call he had been waiting for.
"This is Tony from Hackensack Hospital. I think we have a kidney for you," he said. "And they go, 'Would you like the kidney?'' I said yes."
Voce was diagnosed with kidney disease when he was 20 years old and suffered renal failure last year.
News 12 reported on his story in December because he was looking for a potential match after his family members weren't able to give their kidneys to him.
Most medical statistics show the average wait time for a new one is three to five years.
"My doctors can't believe it, that I got a kidney with under a year. But that's the way it worked, and I'm happy it did," says Voce.
He tells News 12 the kidney came from a registered organ donor who died after being hit by a car.
"So, an unfortunate turn turned into a very positive turn. Not only for me, but for how many people down the road?" he says.
Now as he begins recovering from transplant surgery, the 40-year volunteer firefighter with the Congers Fire Department says he will continue to serve his community by advocating for people to become organ donors.