When John and Janet Tracy got married 26 years ago, they knew they were compatible. What the Ramsey, Minnesota couple didn't know at the time was that they were a perfect match in more ways than just romantically.
John was diagnosed with diabetes 20 years ago, and his kidney function dropped below 20 percent last year. He does dialysis five times a day while battling symptoms like numbness in his hands and feet. He's also waiting on the kidney transplant list for a donor.
It's extremely rare to find a suitable donor who isn't a blood relative -- the odds are one in 100,00 -- but when doctors tested Janet, she turned out to be the right fit.
"It's unreal, but how can I not if it's going to help?" she says. "It's going to help both of us. I kind of want him to stick around a little longer."
But John's emotions are admittedly mixed.
"You know, it's hard," he says. "You don't want to take one of her organs because you want her to live longer too, so it's been a hard thing for me."
Janet's sister calls them a match made in heaven -- one that will help them hopefully have more time together here on earth if the transplant goes smoothly. The Tracys will hopefully get the all-clear to go forward with the procedure in a couple weeks.
How to help
John Tracy's Benefit
Sunday, March 22
3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Westphal American Legion, Robbinsdale, MN
Donations can also be sent to:
John Tracy Benefit
Top Line Bank
9353 Jefferson Hwy
Maple Grove, MN 55359