HILLSBORO, Mo. – A Jefferson County woman desperate to save a friend's life turned to the open road for help. Now, the friends are hoping for a response before time runs out.
Liz Barton of Hillsboro has a rare kidney disease that’s caused kidney failure. Barton spends 12-14 hours per day doing in-home dialysis. Boxes of medical supplies fill her bedroom and another room she once called an office.
“I get big shipments of supplies every month,” said Barton.
And it'll stay that way until Barton gets a kidney transplant. That's something she's waited on for more than a year and the only thing that will save Barton’s Life.
Barton keeps an encouraging card nearby from the girls’ softball team she coaches.
“It helps me keep going,” she said.
But now a dear friend is doing her part to make sure Barton keeps going by creating car magnets with Barton’s story.
“It says please help save my friend,” said April Smith-Hynes.
Barton’s friend isn't a match for donation. But she wasn't about to give up on her “soul sister.”
“She's a mom and she's a coach and she's a wife and a daughter and she needs to be here. And anything I can do to make that happen I’m going to do that,” said Smith-Hynes.
The magnets are now on 15 friends' and family member's cars.
“The more we share, the better chances she's going to get,” said Smith-Hynes.
And it turns out, sharing is working.
On Monday, Barton got a message on Facebook from a total stranger saying she saw the sign and is now in her second round of testing to see if she's a donor match.
“The feeling that I got was unbelievable,” said Barton.
The small sign, created by a friend, could make a huge difference in one woman's life.
“It does bring back hope and it does bring back gratitude that I don't think we could ever say thank you enough,” said Barton.
Barton said one of the toughest parts of being on the organ recipient list is the way laws prevent hospitals from telling her how many people are getting tested.
She's waiting for a call from her doctor or another message from the person she met on Facebook to know if there's a match. In the meantime, she's hoping more people will see the signs or her Facebook page and will get tested.