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The Staff Compass.

 

Staff Spotlight: Victor Martinez , PTA

victor[Idaho State Veteran’s Home – Pocatello, ID]

I was born in Mexico and moved to Idaho when I was 10. I grew up in Ashton, Idaho.

I am a very active person, my favorite things are lifting weights, hunting, fishing and going on hikes with my wife and our German shepherd.

I was recruited by Mary Ann De Guzman, RTL at the VA in Pocatello. One of my favorite things about our rehab team is that we are friendly, communicate well, and strive in helping patients obtain their highest level of function. I love food as long as it is healthy, If I were in a deserted island I would need lots of food, a gym and all of my hunting gear.

Life is short so enjoy it!

The Perfect Match

twoAmelia Barry was determined to keep her sister alive, even though it meant putting her own life in danger.

Last fall, Amelia’s sister, Jeanna, discovered she needed a new kidney. Her body had rejected the kidney she received from her father two decades before. When Amelia heard of her sister’s situation, she immediately volunteered to see if she was a match. Jeanna started dialysis and Amelia began the testing.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, there are currently over 99,000 people in the United States on a waiting list for a kidney transplant. Of these, 14 will die each day waiting for a new kidney.

After a tense waiting period, the word came through: Amelia’s kidney was a perfect match. She would be able to provide her sister with a life-saving kidney, hopefully for the last time.

handsWhen she was just a year and a half old, Jeanna contracted a disease that destroyed her kidneys. She received a kidney from a cadaveric donor, but her body rejected it after a few short years. When she was seven, Jeanna’s father donated one of his kidneys, a process that almost took his life. Both Jeanna and her father pulled through, but unfortunately after 22 years, Jeanna was once again in need of a kidney.

Amelia’s perfect match was the best option. In fact, according to the doctors, the only way Amelia’s kidney could be a better match would be if the sisters were identical twins. Amelia agreed to do the procedure and was grateful for the opportunity to help her sister.

Amelia had one challenge left to face before the surgery could happen: Amelia would be away from work for almost three weeks, but only had a week and a half of personal time off (PTO) available. Amelia works as a clinic coordinator for Mountain Land Rehabilitation in Boise, Idaho. She mentioned her situation to her supervisor, who immediately made a company-wide PTO donation request. The response was incredible. Dozens of coworkers showed their support by offering their valuable personal time off to Amelia.

dadnJeannanMeAmelia and Jeanna met in Salt Lake City for the operation.

Jeanna’s body quickly accepted the kidney, and both women are recovering well. While she was on dialysis, Jeanna graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Culinary Arts from the Art Institute of Salt Lake City. Now that she’s on the road to full recovery, she is excited to begin her new career, hopefully at a high-end restaurant in Park City, Utah.

Amelia is once again hard at work back in the office. She plans to run the Race to Robie Creek in April, a half-marathon in her hometown of Boise. Jeanna will meet her at the finish line.

While it may take a year before either sister is fully recovered, both are in high spirits. They are planning to take a trip together this summer to celebrate the long life ahead of them and the stronger bond they now share.

April Photo Spotlight: Kim Pennington-Lovell

april-winnerThis month’s photographer spotlight is on Kim Pennington-Lovell, the Regional Rehab Manager in Honolulu, Hawaii. Kim’s beautiful photo of three canoes on the sand at Secret Island Beach in Hawaii was selected for the month of April in our calendar.

Kim took her winning photo while on a family vacation to Kualoa Ranch on the weekend of the Honolulu Marathon. Kim captured the shot while preparing to embark on a catamaran to look at turtles and explore Chinaman’s Hat, a small island just offshore of Kualoa Point, Oahu. Kim used a Nikon DLS 5000 camera.

Kim enjoys getting out and photographing nature, animals and landscapes. She recently started scuba diving with her family and purchased a camera that can take photos as deep as 200 feet. She’s looking forward to sharing the photos she gathers from the unique underwater world around her home.

Beautiful photo, Kim! We look forward to many more photos, and hope to see some from your scuba diving escapades in our next photo contest and calendar!

Tree Planting Service Project

panttreesWe will be joining the Service in The City Program to plant trees at Parley’s Historic Nature Park. Directions to the park are below. If you have any questions contact Nicole Elkington at (801) 842-6987.

Parley’s Historic Nature Park is at 2740 S 2700 E

Directions: Take I-215 to Wasatch Blvd, Exit 4. Turn Left onto Wasatch Blvd. Turn left onto 3300 South. Turn right onto 2700 E.