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Good Evening

An inspiring act of selflessness

Marc Weiner, left, stands in front of his

Marc Weiner, left, stands in front of his Times Square billboard ad, with Michael Lollo, who became a donor after reading about Weiner on Dec. 18, 2020. Credit: Maeghan Lollo

It’s an act of pure good.

That’s what Michael Lollo, of West Babylon, did two years ago, when he donated his kidney to a Pennsylvania woman he didn’t know. Lollo, now 48, had hoped to help Great Neck resident Marc Weiner, after he heard Weiner had put up a billboard in Times Square in his own search for a kidney.

Lollo and Weiner didn’t match, but Lollo, a former NYPD detective, didn’t give up trying to help him. After he donated his kidney, Lollo got involved with the National Kidney Donation Organization, which educates and encourages other would-be donors. Meanwhile, Lollo and Weiner, a CBS News executive, became friends and once again, Lollo is trying to help Weiner, a cancer survivor who lost both his kidneys and requires dialysis, find a replacement kidney.

It’s a tale of gratitude, of selfless giving, of hope and friendship, and of the best of the human spirit. And it can inspire the rest of us.

If you want to help Weiner or someone else, you don’t need to be a direct match. Instead, by using the National Kidney Registry’s voucher or paired match programs, the idea is simple: Donate a kidney to a stranger now, on Wiener’s behalf. Weiner would receive a voucher, so he could be paired with a donor who matches him. Often, the chain doesn’t stop there, as one donation leads to another, and then to another, and several lives are saved at once.

Nearly 100,000 people across the country are waiting for a kidney. Many wait years. Healthy individuals, meanwhile, have two kidneys — but only need one.

Donating a kidney requires major surgery and a weeks-long recovery. But if you’re willing and able, this is your chance.

Take a moment and go to Imagine being the first link of a lifesaving chain. Imagine ... an act of pure good.

The editorial board