By DANI BLACKBURN
The faculty of Bowie High School calls itself “one big family.”
While they may not share blood, they now share organs after teacher Candace Mercer donated a kidney to fellow teacher Ronnie Mund.
The 36-year-old Mercer has been teaching government and theater at BHS for seven years, while 53-year-old Mund has been teaching physics and horticulture at Bowie for five years. The teachers underwent surgery on June 6 and are recovering well.
The two are a part of a close-knit group of coworkers who have spent the last years eating lunch together on a daily basis and being pranked by Mund, who is referred to as the “Papa Bear” of the group.
However, work and fun with his coworkers was tiring for Mund, who had been living with low kidney function for nine years. The problem was due to focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), an autoimmune disease that attacks the kidney and causes it to no longer filter correctly.
“The problem is it doesn’t filter out any of the toxins. You always feel bad because your body can’t get rid of anything causing you harm,” explained Mund.
Mercer agreed to donate a kidney to her friend and recently they underwent the transplant surgery coming through successfully.
Read the full feature in the weekend News.