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  • Writer's pictureKidney Foundation of WNY

Paul Kupiec is waiting for a kidney transplant


Paul Kupiec is well known in his hometown of North Tonawanda, but friends and neighbors might not be aware that he’s awaiting a kidney transplant. Paul spent many years as a stationary engineer at DeGraff Memorial Hospital, keeping boilers, coolers and other important mechanical systems running until kidney disease forced him to go out on disability. He and his wife MaryBeth enjoyed taking part in many community events and motorcycle rides, but health problems have slowed him down.


Though Paul has had diabetes for a while, his kidney function declined quickly a few years ago. He started dialysis in 2021 and immediately began pursuing a kidney transplant. While dialysis has been working well for him, he’s dealing with fatigue, anemia, dizziness, blood pressure issues and more. The transplant journey has already required several medical procedures, including the placement of a stent and ankle surgery. As part of the process, Paul has received several units of blood and a donor bone graft.


Paul and MaryBeth have been supporters of ConnectLife Blood & Organ Donor Network over the past decade. Their son Brandon R. Kupiec was an enthusiastic blood donor starting at the age of 16. Since his unexpected passing in 2013, their family has held a memorial blood drive in Brandon’s honor, continuing his legacy by helping to save many lives. The next Brandon R. Kupiec Memorial Blood Drive will take place Thursday, August 3 from 1-7 p.m. at the Shawnee Fire Department, 3734 Lockport Road, Sanborn, NY 14132.


With many tests and treatments behind him, Paul is now on the active kidney transplant waiting list at Erie County Medical Center. Paul hopes that the improved health and freedom a transplant would bring will allow him to spend more quality time with his children and grandchildren, as well as traveling with his wife and enjoying fishing and woodworking.


To learn more about living kidney donation through ECMC or be evaluated as a potential donor, call (716) 898-6283 or email nhaseley @ ecmc.edu. Information is also available at https://www.ecmc.edu/health-services-and-doctors/renal-care-kidney-and-pancreas/living-donor-information/.

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