Commander gets kidney donated by fellow Brighton police officer

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BRIGHTON, Colo. -- In July, Brighton police Cmdr. Scott Wegscheider was battling kidney disease.

Brighton police Officer Nick Struck was watching the news program with his wife and “she just made the off-hand comment, 'Oh, you should go get tested.'”

Wegscheider was in search for a kidney, but his search had been unsuccessful because of his 6-foot-4 stature.

“Quite a few people went and the problem we had is that the size, they weren’t tall enough and that’s been our battle for the last couple of years,”  Wegscheider said.

But Struck didn’t think twice and he knew he was tall enough, being 6-foot.

Brighton Police Officer Nick Struck sings to little girl to calm her

Brighton police Officer Nick Struck sings to little girl to calm her. Photo credit: Jessica Matrious

This isn’t the first time Struck sprang into action. In June a picture of Struck went viral after he picked up a little girl whose family was involved in a fatal accident. He picked her up and began to sing to her to calm her down.

With that same helpful spirit, Struck made a phone call.

“I called them the next day and set up the appointment. The whole time I was really excited about it,” he said.

Struck and Wegscheider had more in common than they thought. Both of their families have known each other for years. In fact, their families went to high school together, and Wegscheider was there for Struck's family when Struck's grandfather died.

But this connection is so much stronger and the bond will connect them for life.

“There’s really not enough thank you I can give him,” Wegscheider said.

This is the first time he and his family can properly thank the donor. Wegscheider and his family have been down this road before. His family has a long history with the illness, and his father and brother have been donor recipients.

“We’ve never had a chance to meet the donor. They were both deceased, so this is kind of a new territory for us,” Struck said.

And to have the donor be in the same building that you work at is even more remarkable. Now, Wegscheider hopes this will encourage others to step forward, but this time for his brother.

His brother Brad needs a donor with the following attributes:

  • Blood Type A or O
  • 5-foot-10 or taller
  • Healthy
  • No diabetes, hypertension or history of kidney stones.

If you would like to be a donor, contact Amanda Treharne at 720-848-2244 or Amanda.treharne@uch.edu at University of Colorado Hospital.

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