Grant Wood paraprofessional Jessica Gosch had little doubt that she would be a match for her father, David Gosch, when she scheduled testing to be a Living Kidney donor. Her father was diagnosed with end stage renal failure the summer of 2016 and, since then, has gone through numerous surgeries and various treatments, including dialysis. “The doctors were sure I would be a positive match for my dad’s transplant,” Jessica Gosch said. “But after going through stages of testing, I was denied being able to go through with being a donor due to health concerns the doctors had for me.”
Tricia Weber, a teacher at Grant Wood and Jessica Gosch’s colleague, was aware of David Gosch’s health and the scheduled appointment for testing last spring for Jessica to be a Living Kidney donor for her father. “She could see how happy and excited I was,” Jessica Gosch said. Weber also saw the grief her colleague felt when she returned to work with the news she would not be considered a candidate for the transplant. “She was there to comfort me throughout the day,” Jessica Gosch said.
Then on May 27, Weber reached out to Jessica Gosch after seeing a Facebook post by Jessica Gosch about kidney donation. “Tricia told me she would love to be tested to see if she could donate,” she said. “She and my dad had never met! And I had only worked with her for a few short months. Who does that?! What an angel!”
Weber went forward with testing and it was confirmed this fall that she is a match for David Gosch. “Tricia called me while I was at Grant Wood working; I walked outside and couldn't stop crying,” Jessica Gosch said. “She called with such excitement in her voice, saying ‘I'm a match, Jessi! I'm a match!’"
The kidney transplant is scheduled for November 30. Weber was hoping for the transplant to be scheduled for early December and while doctors suggest that she should prepare for a 3- to 4-week recovery, Weber is aiming for a short two weeks. “She refuses to leave her students for that long,” Jessica Gosch said. “She wants to keep consistency within her classroom for the kids.”
Weber and Jessica Gosch had known each other for only three months at the time Weber offered to be a donor to David Gosch, whom she had never met. “For 3 months I was working one-on-one with a student that was integrated into her classroom,” Jessica Gosch said. “While in her class, I observed her students look for her for trust, shelter, and love. She is by far one of the greatest teachers I have seen in action. She goes above and beyond to build relationships with and teach her students.”