Lake Mary man back home after lifesaving kidney transplant

Roddy Naranjo once launched campaign to find suitable donor

LAKE MARY, Fla. – A man who once launched a marketing campaign to find a new kidney is back resting at home after he received his lifesaving donation.

Roddy Naranjo of Lake Mary underwent surgery Dec. 12 to receive a kidney donated by a complete stranger: Kristin Scaglione.

"I was a little scared of what was going to happen," Naranjo said.

News 6 has tracked Naranjo's mission to find his new kidney since May 2018.

That's when he printed bumper stickers and T-shirts with his phone number and his request for someone with O-positive blood to donate a kidney.

In August, he thought he had a match, but there were complications.

Then, in December, he invited his new donor to dinner, and one week later, they underwent surgery.

"I don’t even remember walking into the operating room," he said. "I remember being in prep, and I guess they started some of the meds there."

Scaglione is recovering quickly.

In a video sent to News 6, she said she's already running.

"I’m continuing to start training for the Nashville Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathon in April," she said.

"I did promise her that I would run a half marathon with her," Naranjo said.

That will not be happening for a while, though, he said.

First, he has to take handfuls of pills four times a day to help his body accept his new kidney.

"It takes a very special person to do this," he said. "Someone that cares for another human being basically because you’re saving someone’s life."

Naranjo said he is thinking about starting his own nonprofit organization that would specialize in helping people with kidney failure find donors across the country.​

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