LENOIR, N.C. - The statistics are not good: 22 people die every day in the U.S. while waiting for a kidney transplant. Most, spend 7-9 years on the waiting list according to Government data.
Now, a Caldwell County man who recently moved to North Carolina from Tennessee is doing what he can to share the importance of organ donation.
"One of the greatest things I ever did. I have to say the best thing." said Robby 'Smitty' Smith, an organ donor. "It's really changed my life for the better."
Smitty donated a kidney to a Colorado man back in 1994 by visiting the website matchingdonors.com. The website, at the time, was 'for profit' and Smitty's donation was the first of its kind. Matching Donors is now a non-profit website, according to NBC News who profiled the effort a few years ago.
Smitty says he would do it again and, when he isn't working as a handyman, he is spending time online encouraging others to become donors. And possibly, helping to save someone's life.
"There are people out there right now. This is why I'm doing this, that people see that it's okay to do and there are people like me who are willing to advocate for them."
Smitty is active on Facebook and Twitter, promoting organ donation.