Whitecaps ticket manager makes public plea for kidney donation
Allen Leung, the Whitecaps FC manager of ticket operations, is searching for a kidney donor and went public with is request in August 2020. He's seen here with his wife Melodie and son Trevor. (Whitecaps FC)
VANCOUVER -- A member of the Whitecaps staff made what he considered an uncomfortable public plea and is asking the city's soccer fans to help save his life.
Allen Leung is searching for a kidney donor.
The 'Caps manager of ticket operations needs a transplant and has been suffering from kidney failure for three years. He began dialysis earlier this year and has learned that asking for help may be "weird" and uncomfortable but also necessary.
"Asking someone to consider being a donor for me is a weird ask and I don't feel comfortable in asking and I still don't know if I'm doing this the right way but here it goes. I need your help," he posted on Facebook.
Adding to his reluctance to make the public plea, Leung wrote that many lives in this province and around the world have been turned upside down because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The father and husband delayed asking for support when so many others were also suffering during the global health crisis.
"The last few months have been difficult for everyone with various global events affecting our entire human race which has allowed me to realize that life is short," he wrote.
He said he was close to giving up and felt embarrassed. Changes to his lifestyle and diet weren’t remedy enough and, he explained, "My kidney's ability to work for my body had reached a point where it could no longer help me on its own."
Leung is searching for a living donor.
B.C. Transplant explains that living donors are often related to the organ recipient — but they don’t have to be.
"Living donors can be siblings, parents, children or relatives. A donor can also be a friend, relative through marriage, co-worker or a member of the recipient’s community," the organization writes on its website.
A living donor can be a soccer fan — and a stranger.
The Whitecaps praised Leung for his talents building community as the head of ticket operations for the club.
"Many Vancouver fans would recognize him from the Ticketmaster Box Office at BC Place and Rogers Arena, where he's quick to help 'Caps, Lions, and Canucks fans alike on game days and always with a smile on his face."
Living donations are managed through the Vancouver General Hospital and St. Paul’s Hospital through their transplant clinics. The referral process includes screening, testing and evaluation. For questions and to express an interest in becoming a living donor, visit B.C. Transplant here.