“The Big Event” to help local transplant patient

Crestview, Fla., March 31, 2015 – In the mid-2000s, Ron Walker, of Crestview, was diagnosed with a non-alcoholic, life-threatening liver disease. Sadly, he understands the effects of liver disease all too well, as two of his uncles lost their health battles to cirrhosis of the liver. Doctors say a liver transplant is critical.

The average liver transplant costs approximately $575,000. And that’s only the beginning. Even with health insurance, which will cover a portion of the transplant costs, Walker, 48, faces significant expenses related to the surgery. For the rest of his life, he will need follow-up care and daily anti-rejection medications. Post-transplant medications are very expensive, and they’re as critical to his survival as the transplant itself.

When he receives his transplant, Walker and his wife, Kartrina, must temporarily relocate more than 200 miles from their home for 6-8 weeks during recovery, adding to the financial strain.
To help alleviate the financial burden, Walker turned to the National Foundation for Transplants (NFT) for assistance. NFT is a nonprofit organization that helps patients raise funds to pay for transplant-related expenses.

“My heart goes out to Ron,” said Samantha Palazolo, NFT fundraising consultant. “I’m thankful that he has such a great support system around him, and I think this event will be so much fun. At NFT, we’re dedicated to helping him raise the funds he needs to focus on his health, not the incoming bills.”

Saturday, April 11, volunteers are holding The Big Event at Lifepoint Church, 400 S. Ferdon Blvd. in Crestview.

The event begins at 10 a.m. and will include live musical performances, smoked Boston butt sales, barbecue, kids’ activities, speakers, a rummage sale and a fun run. For more information, please contact Kartrina Walker at 850-384-9065.

To make a tax-deductible donation in honor of Walker, please send a contribution to the NFT Florida Transplant Fund, 5350 Poplar Ave., Suite 430, Memphis, TN 38119. Please be sure to write “in honor of Ron Walker” on the memo line. Secure donations also can be made online at www.transplants.org--select “Find an NFT Patient” to locate Walker.

About NFT
NFT is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization based in Memphis, Tenn. that has been helping transplant patients overcome financial obstacles since 1983. NFT provides fundraising expertise to transplant patients by organizing fundraising campaigns in the patients’ own communities. NFT’s fundraising campaigns have generated nearly $70 million to assist patients. NFT assists more than 2,500 transplant candidates and recipients nationwide. For more information about NFT, please call 800-489-3863 or visit www.transplants.org.