(KUTV) -- The Transplant Games are underway, right here in Salt Lake City. The opening ceremony taking place at Smith’s Ballpark on Friday evening. They’re described as the Olympics for organ recipients and donors.
Among those cheering on team Utah-Idaho, are the Wayman brothers. Gerald suffers from a rare disease that attacks his kidneys. Back in 2006, he became quite ill and needed a transplant, so his brother Lynn stepped up to the plate, donating one of his the following year.
Five years later, that kidney started to fail. Around that time, the brothers also lost a cousin, Nick Anderson, to a brain aneuryisum. Nick was an organ donor, his wife Katherine told 2 News, his organs helped save the lives of four people – including Gerald who received one of Nick’s kidney’s in 2013.
The following year, Gerald and Lynn competed in their first Transplant Games in Houston, dominating in the swimming events. The same thing happened two years later, in Cleveland. To date, they told us they’ve won about 64 medals together.
This year though, on home turf, only Lynn is competing because Gerald is once again in kidney failure. His wife is now being tested to be his third donor.
But Gerald plans on being with Lynn, every step of the way, cheering him on. Katherine Anderson Van Aflen, Nick’s wife, will also be there too.
Both brothers though, said it’s really not about winning or losing. For them, it’s watching people – who just months ago were at death’s door – honor their donors by competing in these games.
For more information about the games, which run through Tuesday, click here: http://www.teamutahidaho.org/about-us.html
If you’d like to learn more about becoming an organ donor, click any of the links below: