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Pete Roxas – Kidney Transplant Recipient

Father’s Day holds significant meaning this year for the Roxas family. Five years ago, Pete Roxas, a proud father and grandfather who emigrated from the Philippines seeking a better life for himself and his future family, received a new lease on life.

In late 2013, the retired military government salesman from Long Island was diagnosed with chronic renal failure, sending Pete’s life in “complete chaos” in the intervening months, recalled his son, Miguel. “His life took a bit of a turn.”

After what Miguel said felt like a lifetime on dialysis, Pete finally was placed on the transplant waiting list for a new kidney. The waiting “was a burden you never would wish on anybody,” said Miguel, adding that Pete even considered adding his name to transplant waiting lists in other states.

When word of a possible donor match finally came from the Northwell Health transplant team, Pete and his wife were visiting their daughter in California. They quickly boarded a plane and rushed home to meet with his transplant surgeon.

Back on Long Island, Miguel received a 2 a.m. call from his sister with the heartwarming news.

Tears of joy and anxiety rushed to my eyes when I heard my sister say, ‘Dad got a donor!’

Miguel Roxas

He rushed to the hospital and waited by his father’s bedside for several long hours following the surgery. Pete was overjoyed to hear his granddaughter’s voice soon after waking up from the procedure.

As his father’s kidney transplant anniversary approaches on June 16, Miguel acknowledges that “second chance are never to be wasted or taken for granted. My dad has used this time around to spend every minute in gratitude and education for the next person that it will affect.”

Pete, now 62, has made the most of this time collecting sneakers, attending car shows, watching basketball games with Miguel, and cherishing time with his grandchildren. He even went on a vacation cruise for the first time and returned to visit his homeland.

“An angel saved my dad’s life through the selfless act of kindness and courage. I’m forever grateful to that man, and to his family for his last act on earth.”

Miguel Roxas

Through their story, the Roxas family invites others to be the bearers of hope for the thousands of NYS patients need of lifesaving organ transplants.

Register as an Organ and Tissue Donor