St. Leo The Great School teacher donates kidney to colleague in need of transplant
The family of a teacher in desperate need of a kidney transplant had their prayers answered when a match was found.
Lauren Crupi is a language arts teacher at St. Leo The Great School in Lincroft who needs an organ transplant. She found a match at her own school – a fact that was celebrated on Wednesday.
“When I first came to Saint Leo’s, I thought I was just going to teach at the school that my kids went to, and I now see that I was here for a much greater reason,” Crupi says.
Crupi is a mother of two. She was diagnosed with a rare kidney disease. Her kidneys began to fail more rapidly in December.
“The whole process has been really long – daunting at times,” she says.
Crupi’s husband made a Facebook post looking for a match. Computer science teacher Mike Daneman volunteered to get tested and was the only match. He agreed to donate one of his kidneys to his colleague.
“I lost my mom when I was very young, when I was 5, to cancer and I know how important it is that these kids to have their mom,” Daneman says. “I actually teach their son in class and their daughter is the same age that I was when I lost my mom."
The process will take about four or five hours – but the surgery could add years to Crupi’s life.
"Hopefully it's very successful and we’re able to have many, many more years with my kids and my husband,” Crupi says.
The teachers headed to New York City Wednesday night for surgery on Thursday at Columbian Presbyterian.