WAYNESBORO, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT/Gray News) - A man who has dedicated his life to serving others is making a plea to his community.
Mark Anthony Gaines is a veteran who's in desperate need of a new kidney. He has at-home dialysis five days a week in a small room in his home.
"I need a kidney. I need a kidney very bad. That way I can get a normal life again," he said.
This new battle he's now fighting comes long after the days he served in the Army as a medic. He joined in 1977 and lived for years in Germany.
That's where he met his wife and had his first child, Veronika.
"Life changed. Our sails adjusted, but we just try to make more meaning of the time we have together," his daughter said.
The battle Mark Gaines is fighting now is for his life. His kidney is failing.
"I dread when I go to dialysis and see the people there. That's why I chose home dialysis," he said.
Three hours a day, five days a week, for three and a half years Mark has done dialysis at home. Through it all, he still works as a mechanic for the Burke County Road Department.
"It can get pretty depressing at times, but you know you don't show it. You put a smile on your face and you keep going," he said.
His family's hope is for someone to give him a kidney. His son is a deputy at the Burke County Sheriff's Office, and his plea was shared on Facebook nearly 250 times.
"We know there is someone selfless out there that will hopefully be a match for my dad," said his daughter.
They've had people step up before, but so far no one has been able to help.
"It is hard to have hope and then have it taken back. I'm looking for somebody to be just a servant and just help out," his daughter said.
This is where the community comes in. If you'd like to see if you're a match, CLICK HERE.
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