- Jun 27, 2006
On September 4th of last year, firefighter Jeff Diederich came home from work to discover his year-old son Aiden lying strangely still in his crib, grey and yellowed from Jaundice. He and his wife Heather rushed to the hospital only to discover that Aiden needed a liver transplant, and was no way the always crowded National Donor List route would save him in time. Their only option was a living transplant, where a portion of a living donor's liver is transplanted into the recipient. The father offered to undergo the procedure, but his family changed his mind. The 40% risk of donor death meant that Heather would be left alone with two children, so they had to look elsewhere. Enter Aiden's Uncle, Jeff Shoemaker.
Jeff, the uncle, recalls, "after seeing him laying there with all the tubes and hoses, cables and wires I think all my fears went away. My life was worth giving to save his, and if that's what it took, I was fine with that."
Six months later both Aiden and Jeff have recovered, with Shoemaker giving his nephew a gift that the child will never forget for as long as he lives.
Jeff Shoemaker is a gamer. He posted the story over on the SeasonGamers.com forums, understandably proud of his actions. In the midst of all of the negative press gaming has been getting recently from the likes of JC, Fox News, and the New York Post, a story like this comes along and none of those articles and accusations matter anymore.
Sure, it could have been anyone donating that liver, but this time it was a gamer. If the other media outlets want to focus on gaming in negative stories, I see no reason why we can't do it on the positive ones.