LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A social media post could be the game changer one Arkansas man needs as he waits for a kidney.
Shem Woods, an Arkansas Department of Corrections officer has received an outpouring of love by people far and wide after he let people on social know about his stage 5 kidney failure condition.
“People I’ve never met in my life talking about they’re willing to donate a kidney. That touches a part of your heart you don’t expect,” Woods said.
He takes 20 pills a day and non-stop 24-hour dialysis treatment but said, “Once that kidney comes, in it’s back to the races.”
Photos of Woods show him 60 pounds heavier with a muscular figure before being diagnosed in early 2022 when he was much more active.
“It’s kind of rough looking at my kids when they want me to do certain things, but I physically can’t do it,” he said.
But he still somehow finds the strength to go to work for the ADC.
Besides hospital visits and constant dialysis, Woods continues to work to support his wife and 11 kids.
Yes, he is in pain. Yes, he is tired. But he said he can’t let stage 5 kidney failure stop him from providing for his family.
Woods said the doctor advised him not to work but he feels he has to.
“I still have my wife and kids to take care of,” he explained.
Woods’ family has set up a GoFundMe to help with funds so he doesn’t have to work as much until he can get a new kidney.
His sickness led to the end of the trucking company he ran for 11 years.
“It’s kind of hard to run a business from a hospital bed,” Woods said.
Waiting on a new kidney, his mother shared his story on Facebook hoping for a miracle after burying two of her sons in the past.
Still no match, but a boost of hope came after multiple people shared, they got screened just to see if they matched.
Woods is A-positive and if you decide to get checked and don’t match, he said prayer is the next best thing you can give.
“I just pray that out of this pond of people, somebody is a blessing, and somebody is a match,” he said.
Officer Woods is A-positive and can be matched with A-positive, A-negative, O-positive and O-negative.
He has been on the waiting list since March.
If you’d like to fill out a living donor application, you can visit LivingDonor.UAMS.edu.