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Pastor gets a new lease on life thanks to a kidney donation from a stranger

By Sula Kim

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    SAINT BERNARD, Louisiana (WDSU) — A St. Bernard Parish pastor has a new lease on life, thanks to the kindness and sacrifice of a stranger.

David Gonzalez was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2020.

The aggressive treatment for the rare form of blood cancer weakened the 49-year-old physically and emotionally, and eventually, his kidneys stopped working.

“And at one point, the doctors were like, I don’t think he’s going to overcome this because I was so sickly,” Gonzalez said.

He was on dialysis for 10 hours a day and on the verge of giving up.

That’s when his wife Jennifer made a post about his plight on social media.

The message went viral, reaching scores of people, including a complete stranger named Chris Stall.

Stall says when he saw the post, he felt a strong nudge in his heart to donate his kidney and save the life of this husband and father of three.

“I lost my dad. He had cancer. And that’s really, as I was reading through the post, I saw he had cancer and he had children. And I just wanted to know if I could help him in any way,” Stall said.

So, he underwent a few tests and became a match.

As fate would have it, the two strangers were really no strangers at all. They were neighbors living down the street from each other. And the two men and their siblings all went to the same daycare as toddlers.

“To my grandmother’s day care 40 years ago. So, I saw them as little kids. And so God performed a miraculous healing in my life. I’m so grateful for Chris and his family,” said Gonzalez.

Stall said he’s happy to have saved a life. He said his dad would be very proud in heaven.

“He tells me all the time, you know, how proud he is. And he shows me different signs. I felt like it was him directing me the whole way,” Stall said.

Gonzalez is now celebrating a new life, and the two are celebrating a new brotherhood.

They say the perfect match was written in the stars, decades ago.

“I mean, God had it in the works from a long time ago,” Stall said.

“In fact, Chris named his kidney, gave me destiny,” Gonzalez said.

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