A police officer from Missouri, USA, received a kidney from another 22-year-old police officer who was shot and killed in the line of duty.
Officer Mark Priebe of the Springfield Department received the gift of life from a fellow police officer that lost his life.
22-year-old Officer Blaize Madrid-Evans of the Independence Police Department was shot and killed in the line of duty last week.
Evans was an organ donor.
After his death, he was deemed as a match for Springfield, Missouri Police Officer Mark Priebe who was in need of a kidney transplant.
Heather Priebe, the wife of Officer Mark, said its hard for them to be happy and smile when they know someone’s family is still trying to cope up with the loss of their loved one.
It’s hard for us to be happy and smile when we know that he lost his life, doing what he wanted to do.
Heather said it was a bittersweet moment when they found out that her husband would receive a kidney from a fallen officer.
Heartbreaking to say the least, just because even though I don’t know him he’s still a brother in blue and he’s a brand new officer, started out, I started out when I was 21, over 20 years ago and he’s just getting started in his career.
Evans was killed in the line of duty last week.
Priebe had a near death accident last year, which complicated his ongoing 17 year battle with a kidney disease.
Talking about the incident, he said:
Unfortunately, when he pulled in I was trying to wave him over, and he decided he was just going to run me over and I couldn’t get out of the way quick enough. He turned his vehicle towards me and gunned it and I ended up getting run over in front of the headquarters there.
The injury left him paralyzed from the waist down.
The family came to the SSM Health St. Louis University Hospital on the transplant list in August.
Registered Nurse Cody Wooley coordinated the transplant.
Nurse Wooley said:
We had over 1400 people reach out to be living kidney donors to Mark. It has to be a record, and actually, 350 of those people were willing to donate to anyone if Mark was able to get it from someone else.
Priebe is now recovering from surgery.
The family said that they are feeling forever bonded to the family of the fallen officer.
Mark and Heather are planning to meet his family soon.
I don’t know that I will be able to say anything. Just hug, just hold and just let them know that we’re here and that we’re always here for them. Even though I never met the man, he’s family, and it does make me proud that now I get to hopefully honor him.
Officer Priebe is expected to be discharged from the hospital on Thursday.
Mark has 2 children, and one of them, a 16-year-old, says he wants to follow his father’s footsteps and become a police officer.