One donor's story: Jeffrey Poitra
Hello, my name is Jeff Poitra and I am 31 years old. I live in north central North Dakota where I am a shift manager at a local store. I am also a part time student working toward a degree in nutrition or dietetics. I am a very health conscious person and enjoy living life to the fullest.
Family has always been the most important part of my life. I am the youngest of five children, three boys, two girls. My siblings all have large families so I am blessed with many nieces and nephews. There is never a dull moment. I am the type of person who enjoys being busy and productive therefore I have always been ‘a work in progress.’
When I was a senior in high school my brother, 24 years old, just married, with a new baby boy, suffered renal failure. He too was quite a healthy man and was told by the renal specialist that he was born with only one kidney and a second one that wasn’t fully functional. My family members were all tested for donation and I was recommended as being the best candidate. My mother asked me and I didn’t hesitate to say yes to donating. They say that it is the “gift of life.” I merely saw it as helping my big brother continue to be the great father, brother, son, and husband he had always been. Even though I’ve never considered myself to be a hero, what little kid doesn’t want to grow up to be just that?