By DEBORAH A. MILES
When Monica Hardy was a child, she was diagnosed with diabetes. Now, at the age of 52, that chronic disease requires her to live connected to an insulin pump. Last year, doctors informed her she needed a kidney and pancreas transplant, a procedure simultaneously done when there are complications.
Hardy, an attorney from New Jersey, moved back to the Capital Region to be closer to her family as her illness progressed. She gave up her practice, moved in with her 84-year-old mother, who is legally blind, and donated her career wardrobe to a unit at Albany Medical Center that distributes clothing to the needy.
Hardy is unmarried, without children. She is the baby of the family, and has four other siblings. One is a PEF member, Danielle Freeman, who was the first in line to donate her kidney, but she was not a match.
“I was not even close to being a match,” Freeman said. “One of our church members also stepped up, and he also was not a match. Monica was expecting a kidney in late January, but it was given to someone who was more critical. But she is on the top of the list, because the search has gone international. No one in the U.S. is a match for her.
“That was tough, when your hopes are raised and you are brought to a new level, and then brought back down again. It’s not an ‘oops’ like when you lose something. This is a life oops.”
Freeman, who works full time as a program analyst at the state Higher Education Services Corporation, said her sister would benefit from financial support, with not having an income, incurring medical expenses and having to hire aides and house cleaners.
“I visit her and my mother daily, but working full time there is only so much you can do. My sister is a proud woman and does not want a “fund me’ page. Recently I had a talk with PEF President Wayne Spence and he suggested that members may be inclined to help. I was very impressed that he took the time to listen to me, and I appreciate his concern. I also appreciate all the support from my friends and co-workers who have shared prayers, encouragement and kindness. My director Barbara Hochberg, who is a PEF member, also has shown nothing but understanding and a helping hand.”
“My sister is hopeful she will be healed or will soon receive a kidney. Whatever people can do to help, a prayer or donation, would be greatly appreciated.”
You may contact Freeman at moc.l1493263262iamg@14932632623649e1493263262llein1493263262ad1493263262