By COLlive reporter
A chance meeting at the US Post Office in New York has led a Chabad Shliach to launch a charitable effort to save the life of a fellow Jew he met for the first time.
Running an errand at the post office, Rabbi Boruch Wolf heard a customer ask the teller, “make sure it arrives there, because it’s for a transplant.” After the customer left the clerk, the rabbi inquired; “may I ask what type of transplant”?
The person responded that he was on dialysis and was reaching out to the Renewal organization, which pairs willing donors with kidney recipients. “I’m asking them to aid me in my search for a kidney,” he said.
That is how the friendship began between David Dolinsky, a resident of New Hyde Park, and Rabbi Wolf, Director of Chabad at the Medical Centers serving the medical community at North Shore and Long Island Jewish (LIJ) in Long Island.
Wolf couldn’t offer the 71-year-old Dolinsky his own as he had already been a kidney donor to a Jew from the Bronx some 5 years ago, but felt “it was the hand of Hashem leading us to meet.”
Dolinsky and his wife Michelle were invited to the Wolfs for a Shabbos meal where he was given encouragement that he will find a match for his blood type and promised to spread the word.
“My husband of 47 years has been selfless in his love for me his wife and our children and grandchildren,” Mrs. Dolinsky stated. “He is righteous, learned, G-d fearing, devoted to family and encompasses everything good on this earth.”
David Dolinsky, a retired trial lawyer for New York City, wasn’t optimistic about the chances. “Nonetheless, I’m warmed by the fact that you took interest and care and that you’re calling, even if I never get a kidney,” he told Wolf who decided to step-up the efforts.
Rabbi Avrohom Lieder, Executive Director of of the Ahavas Chesed medical assistance organization, suggested printing flyers. Mrs. Nechama Dina Hecht, a Shlucha in Greenfield, MA, and a graphic designer, agreed to design a flyer pro bono.
After local printers in Long Island declined to donate the printing, Wolf turned to the Lubavitch community in Crown Heights and found a caring heart. “Empire Press and the Print House both agreed to help out,” says Wolf. “I was so touched by the eagerness of the Anash community to help.”
The family now waits for a miracle in the form of a donor. “My father is in need of a miracle to save his life,” his son, Adam Dolinsky says. “He is currently suffering from end stage renal failure and is in desperate need of a kidney.”
Residents in New Hyde Park are being notified about the need, yet Rabbi Wolf says he is reaching out to the Chabad community as well. “A half dozen shluchim and approximately a dozen Lubavitchers are already living kidney donors,” he tells COLlive.com.
Wolf recalls that his own surgery that was performed on a Thursday morning was a smooth success. “Two days later, I was in shul for Friday night and Shabbos day,” he says and notes that after recovering from surgery, the lifestyle of the donor remains the same as prior.
One requires only a single kidney to live a completely healthy life, yet we are born with two, he adds. In fact, life insurance companies abstained from charging higher premiums of kidney donors once data proved that donors live longer lives than non-donors.
David Dolinsky requires a blood type O or A kidney (whether A/O positive or negative). Unlike bone marrow transplants where it’s an extremely defined match required, by kidney transplants, if you are the right blood type, it’s a 50/50 chance that you will match, Wolf says.
“My husband is deservant of a long and healthy life to continue his selfless and charitable endeavors,” his wife adds. “Whenever there is a person who needs help, David is there on the spot. Please help this man, my husband, my life.”
For more info (without committing to donate), call Rabbi Boruch Wolf at (516) 360-0299 or [email protected]