Kidney Transplant Recipient and American Idol Finalist to Perform at Walk for Kidneys

June 4, 2014
CHICAGO, IL

Transplant Recipient and American Idol Finalist to Perform at Walk for Kidneys
The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois Hosts 15th Annual Fundraising Walk

The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois will host the 15th annual Walk for Kidneys health fair and fundraiser on Sunday, June 22 at Soldier Field, with a special performance from Scott MacIntyre, American Idol finalist and kidney transplant recipient.

At 19 years old, Scott dealt with the overwhelming reality of undiagnosed end-stage kidney failure. After two years of searching for answers, undergoing dialysis and watching his dreams fall farther and farther out of reach, the wife of a former piano teacher donated her kidney, saving Scott's life.

Formerly known as the Gift of Life Walk, Walk for Kidneys will raise awareness and funds for kidney disease prevention, education and empowerment programs presented by the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois. Free registration for the walk is available online at www.nkfi.org. One in three American adults is at risk for kidney disease and with Walk for Kidneys, the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois will help change this statistic, one step at a time.

The three-mile walk along Lake Michigan includes a health fair, refreshments, music, entertainment, and fun activities for all ages. Walk for Kidneys is expected to bring together over 2,500 participants from the kidney community all across Chicagoland for a day of camaraderie and standing strong for kidney health.

Another member of the kidney community, 11-year-old Katlin from Carol Stream, Illinois, will attend Walk for Kidneys along with her team of supporters known as Kure 4 Katlin. At a young age, Katlin was diagnosed with a rare disorder called Mainzer Saldino Syndrome. She suffers from kidney disease as a result of the disorder. According to her mother, Sue Koth, she will most likely need a kidney transplant in her teens.

Sue keeps friends and family posted on Katlin’s condition through her Facebook page. She calls Katlin “my little trooper” due to her strength and optimism.

“Everyone knows her as my little trooper because she would never say something is wrong with her. She’s positive, and never uses any of her issues as an excuse,” said Sue. “She’s a fighter.”

Walk for Kidneys is made possible each year through the support of teams such as Kure 4 Katlin, plus countless volunteers, donors and sponsors. For the 13th year in a row, Walk for Kidneys will be presented by Baxter International, Inc., headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois. Baxter anticipates bringing a team of more than 800 people, including employees and their family members to enjoy the festivities. Top sponsors include Gold Sponsor Astellas Pharma US, Inc. and National Partner, Satellite Healthcare Inc.

“As a pioneer and leader in kidney disease treatment, Baxter is proud to continue supporting Walk for Kidneys and bring much needed awareness and assistance to the millions of Americans living with kidney disease,” said Jill Schaaf, CVP and president of Baxter’s renal business, and National Kidney Foundation of Illinois board member. “We are actively recruiting walkers and look forward to adding to last year’s 775 participating Baxter employees, family and friends to show our collective spirit and enthusiasm surrounding this wonderful event.”

About the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois
The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois improves the health and well-being of people at risk for and affected by kidney disease through prevention, education and empowerment. To learn more, please visit www.nkfi.org.