VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — A retired Virginia Beach police officer spent 20 years fighting crime and taking criminals off the streets. Now the Sergeant is fighting a new battle and his brothers in blue are taking action to help.
Michael Felts is looking for a new kidney. His organ began to fail after doctors diagnosed him with lupus in 2006. Now, the retired officer spends four days a week hooked up to a dialysis machine for hours at a time.
“It affects my wife, it affects my kids, it affects everyone around me,” Felts told WTKR.
Fellow Virginia Beach officers heard about Felt’s plight and the department sent out a mass email to their officers looking for donors. The email read in part:
“He is in the process of being listed on the national donor list, but the average time it takes a person to obtain a kidney is 5 years. Mike’s best chance is to find a living donor who is willing to donate a kidney and is a match. The first step in the process is having the blood type “O”. “
“If you didn’t know Mike I can tell you he was not only a well-liked supervisor, but a great SID detective who would give the shirt off his back or a ride in his boat.”
“Mike receiving a new kidney will dramatically improve his quality of life and increase his overall longevity. The decision to participate in the living donor program is not an easy decision, but if you do feel it may be something you’re interested in please visit the web site at http://www.sentaralivingdonation.com. This program is free to the donor.”
Hope for the future came immediately as Felts received calls of support from his fellow officers. In addition, some officers have even gotten tested to see if they are a match with Felts.
Felts said the huge response and outpouring of love was overwhelming.
“People are so willing to help and I’m so grateful,” said Felts. “I know I’m blessed even if I don’t get a kidney. I have a great family with the police department and have a great family here.”
Felts is still waiting to see if one of the officers tested is a match.