Twins celebrate lifesaving miracle this Christmas

OSCAR MORALES, left, is home after his brother Hector Morales donated his kidney to him

Oscar and Hector Morales have matching kidneys this Christmas.

Oscar has a little something else: A future.

Hector donated a kidney to his fraternal twin Oscar in a transplant Oct. 17 at Porter Transplant Hospital in Denver.

The surgery ended more than four years of dialysis for Oscar and reopened his eyes to the future he always wanted to pursue.

“Now I can be free from (dialysis) and start focusing on my goals in life,” Oscar wrote on a
Web site set up by Hector, “Thanks for all your generosity and support. But the special thanks go to God who made it all possible. It was a miracle.”

Oscar’s miracle went immediately to work when Hector’s kidney was taken from his body and placed in Oscar.

Dialysis cleans only 60 percent of the waste and impurities that the bloodstream picks up from the rest of the body, leaving people with kidney problems in a state of constant discomfort.

A real kidney, however, is 100 percent cleaner and Oscar said he feels the difference.

“It clears up your mind, it clears up your muscles, it clears up everything,” he said.

Now a kidney short of what he was born with, Hector said he also notices a difference.

“It definitely has changed the way I see life,” Hector said. “I feel really good.”

Hector and Oscar, 29, might have matched kidneys, but not matching scars.

Hector’s kidney was removed in a laparoscopic surgery, so his scar of about 4 inches is about half the length of his brother’s.

Hector and Oscar last summer organized a concert, car wash and other fundraisers to get enough money for the transplant.

“Mesa County and western Colorado really came through for us,” Hector said.

To everyone who helped organize and participated, the Morales brothers said they offer their thanks.

It was fortunate that he could offer a kidney to his brother, Hector said. In many cases, people simply are not acceptable candidates to donate such an organ, even to close relatives.

For those who can, Hector has relayed his experience on in hopes of helping potential donors understand what’s at issue and the potential benefits.

He notes on the Web page that he asked first about how Oscar was doing when he came to after surgery.

“At that moment I had an amazing feeling,” Hector wrote. “I was extremely happy for him. I knew all of my prayers had been answered.”

Oscar is to begin spring semester classes at Mesa State with hopes of going on to medical school at Harvard.

Doing that will take time and diligence, Oscar said, but it’s also a dream he has long held.

Hector, whose diploma from Mesa State hangs in a place of pride on the family wall, plans to pick up again where he left off with an internship with the Univision television network.

Not all has gone perfectly, however.

Hector’s and Oscar’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer about the same time as the transplant and her sons know she has a difficult road ahead.

But for this Christmas, they have scars, hope and faith.

“This is the best present I could have ever had,” Hector said. “Thanks to God and to Jesus Christ, who has been with us and will always be with us.”


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