PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A celebration in Philadelphia this evening acknowledges a series of five kidney donations in which the donors are alive but not related to the recipients.

Most organ donors are deceased, since most organs are one per customer.  But we each have two kidneys, which Howard Nathan (below right), president and CEO of the “Gift of Life” donor program, says are sometimes shared.

nathan howard side Philadelphia Gift of Life Program Honors 5 Living Kidney Donors

(Howard Nathan, pres., Gift of Life donor program. Photo provided)

“More and more, friends and neighbors are giving,” he notes, “but now there’s this new phenomenon of people just wanting to do some good for their fellow man and giving their kidney to someone else.”

Anne Peniazek is the person who started this five-way act of generosity.  Her kidney went to a stranger.  Someone close to him, but incompatible donation-wise, in turn gave a kidney to a second recipient.  And so on.

But Peniazek was simply not in the mood to take much credit.

“I truly don’t think it’s a major big deal to do.  Why not?” she said today, although she admits hers is a minority view: most people do find it a big deal.

Reported by John Ostapkovich, KYW Newsradio 1060

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