Family uses bus ads to search for kidney donor: ‘It’s what I have to do to live’

Posted at 4:14 PM, Mar 13, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-13 16:14:47-04

RENTON, Wash. — A Washington State man is campaigning not for politics or money, but for his life.

Emmett Smith spends a lot of time counting. The 27-year-old husband and father of a nine-month-old has been sick for two years, according to Q13News.

“I could be on dialysis indefinitely but it is really harsh on your body and it could possibly shorten your life span,” he said.

Emmett is in desperate need of a kidney transplant. Back in 2012, he was diagnosed with IgA nephropathy, a disease that caused both of his kidneys to stop functioning.

“My blood pressure goes up and I end up with migraine headaches, which basically turn into nausea, which turns into vomiting over and over and over again which kind of counts me out for the whole day,” he said. “50-percent of my days are almost wasted on dialysis and I want a hundred percent of my days to be awesome for her.”

Emmett and his wife Esther tried to spread the word on social media hoping to find a donor, but they felt the need to do something bigger.

“I was trying to find a way to reach the most amount of people, and I was trying to be creative when doing that,” she said. “I wanted it to be unique, and that is… unique.”

That bright idea is now displayed on 20 King County Metro buses. Above a picture of Emmett holding his baby girl, the slogan reads, “My Daddy Needs a Kidney.”