Officers tell donor tales
AS HUNDREDS of organ donors and recipients prepare to test their limits in a battle of strength and will at the 2016 Transplant Games across western Sydney, three St Marys police officers are celebrating a second chance at life after receiving kidney donations.
Senior Constables Paul Hudson, Shane Parkinson and Tony Mascherin share their stories about facing their own mortality and coming out the other side, thanks to organ transplants generously gifted by their family and friends. ››
THEY are the three amigos, three work colleagues with a bond cemented in a shared experience of eyeballing – and defying – their own mortality.
Senior Constables Paul Hudson, 34, Shane Parkinson, 38, and Tony Mascherin, 47, have each other’s backs as police officers with the St Marys local area command.
But the men are connected indelibly as organ transplant recipients, the trio beating an inevitable early death through the generosity of others.
On the eve of the Australian Transplant Games in western Sydney, the officers shared their amazing and inspiring stories.
Sen-Constable Parkinson said his older sister and kidney donor, Patricia Gibbons, was his hero. No two ways about it.
He credits her with giving him life and giving life to his third child.
“I’d had ongoing health problems and I was at dialysis stage when I had the transplant,” he said. “The transplant (18 months ago) also enabled my wife and I to have our third child.”
Sen-Constable Mascherin was gifted a kidney by a detective work colleague, Anthony Blair.
“In 2011 I had kidney failure and was on dialysis for four years,” he recounted. “Anthony came to me one day and said he’d like to give me a kidney.
“He’s a very, very generous person who would do anything for anyone. It’s hard to even say thank you. It was a selfless act.”
Sen-Constable Hudson was born with kidney problems and, as he got older, his condition deteriorated. By the time he was 20 he needed dialysis. His older sister Alison stepped in with a life- changer – a kidney donation – in 2003 when he was 21.
“The end game was death or years and years on a waiting list,” Sen-Constable Hudson said.
“I want to live my life to the fullest to take advantage of the gift I have been given by my sister.”
The 2016 Transplant Games will be held from Saturday to October 1 in western Sydney.
Sen Constables Hudson and Mascherin will be in several events. Sen-Constable Parkinson is disappointed he is having shoulder surgery during the Games.
Organ donor recipients, Senior Constables Shane Parkinson, Tony Mascherin and Paul Hudson.