DENVER — A Broncos legend gave one fan the surprise of her life, and it's one that she certainly earned. Less than two weeks ago, she gave one of her kidneys to her brother.
Donna and Dave George are brother and sister with a strong bond that got even stronger when Donna George made the selfless decision to donate one of her kidneys after her brother's began to fail.
"Last January, she knew I was on the kidney list, and she said 'I’m going to do it,'" Dave George said.
"I said I did not want you to wait two to five years or whatever it is," Donna George said.
Dave was one of nearly 2,000 people in Colorado and more than 100,000 people nationwide waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant.
Dr. Giri Vedula performed the transplant surgery on Dave George. He says there are misconceptions surrounding organ donation preventing some from donating.
"Donation does not really alter the course of their life, and, if anything, it enhances the quality of their life because of what you’re doing for somebody else," Vedula said.
Of course with any surgery, there are risks. Donna George was aware but didn’t let that stop her.
To say thank you, Dave George thought of ways to show his appreciation.
"The constant for our family and for Donna has always been the Broncos and Randy Gradishar," Dave George said.
Through Centura Health, the Bronco legend answered the call and gave his biggest fan a shock she won’t soon forget. On Thursday morning, the George family entered a conference room at Porter Adventist Hospital in Denver. Waiting there was Gradishar.
"Oh my gosh David. What did you do?" Donna George said as she gave her brother a hug.
"I honestly didn’t know who it was at first because of the mask," Donna George said.
Randy replied, "well, and the gray hair."
The Ring of Famer shared old football stories with the George family, signed autographs and took pictures
"My Broncos room at home is named after a poster I have of you," Donna George said.
It was a morning of joy for a family who lately has been through so much.
If you're interested in learning more through Centura Health about living kidney donation, click here.