CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – A local mother daughter community service group called “Giving Grasshoppers” is in need of the community’s help.
One of their teenage group members is in need of a kidney and doctors need to find a donor match before she turns 18.
When Autumn Stone was 2 years old she was diagnosed with pneumonia and developed a rare disorder that caused her kidneys to fail. Her mother, Vonnie, stepped up and donated her kidney, but in September of 2020, Autumn began to fall ill once again.
“They said it’s time for her to get a new kidney,” says Vonnie Stone, Autumn’s Mother.
Stone says she knew this day was coming because donor kidneys only last about 15 years and July will make 15 years since the first transplant.
If she doesn’t receive a kidney by her 18th birthday she will no longer be considered a pediatric patient-therefore making it more difficult to receive a transplant.
“It’s different this time because I was one when I needed my first one. This time I’m 17. I wouldn’t say it’s been stressful but it’s something I am more focused on than really anything else,” says Autumn Stone.
Though, this time around may be different for Autumn. She and her mom have an entire support system to lean on within their group-the Giving Grasshoppers.
“She has so much life in her and so much to give. I have known Autumn since she was 5. But To see her now and to know she is about to be an adult, i just want things to be normal for her. Not to say her life isn’t-because to me she is a fighter,” says Samaria White, Co founder of Giving Grasshoppers.
Founder of the Giving Grasshoppers and best friend to Autumn tried to donate her own kidney but doctors say she is too young.
“Even if we cannot give her a kidney ourselves, we know there are people out there in the community that we could hopefully reach out to and help her find one,” says Chloei Marshall, Co founder of The Giving Grasshoppers.
Medication is currently keeping Autumn’s condition under control but Autumn turns 18 in just 9 months and is in desperate need of your help.
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a possible donor for Autumn, please click here.