PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — If you’re driving along northbound Interstate 95, you’ll see a massive billboard on the west side, right along Northlake Boulevard, that reads, “Please help! Natalie needs a new kidney. 561.541.7953.”
The billboard will be coming down if the family can’t raise enough money to keep it up before the end of May.
If you call the telephone number, you will be connected with Christopher Moussally, the brother-in-law of Natalie Imbasciani.
“She currently has her father’s kidney,” he said. “Unfortunately, she’s in renal failure and we’re looking for a donor. Natalie is currently 44 years old, she’s been on dialysis more than five years, and we’re just looking for that one person to pull on their heartstrings and be a match and give her the gift of life.”
Moussally has led the charge for the family, seeking a kidney donor. He’s had magnetic stickers made that can be attached to family members’ vehicles so they can carry the phone number all the way up to New Jersey.
“I fight because Natalie’s a fighter and, you know, you would never know speaking with her that she has all of these issues,” he said. “She would never ask for sympathy. She would never let you know she’s in pain.”
In renal failure, Imbasciani is in dialysis three days a week for four hours a day. A machine diverts her blood and cleans it, helping to remove waste and excess fluid from the blood since her kidney won’t do the job properly.
Imbasciani never knows how she will feel after the procedure. She said it has been a heartbreaking and miserable process, and she’s watched many people die in the last six years. A kidney from a match could extend the length and quality of her life.
“I would go back to work,” she said. “I would travel more. I miss my best friend. I haven’t seen her in over 13 years. You know, it’s just a lot.”
HOW YOU CAN HELP: Help fund billboard | Call 561-541-7953 to offer to get tested for kidney donation
Her sister, Danielle Moussally, explained how every member of the family, plus many friends and complete strangers, have tested and not been right for a variety of reasons.
“My sister Natalie, she’s younger than me,” Danielle Moussally explained. “She was born with kidney disease. About 16 years ago, she needed a transplant and my father was a perfect match, so he donated to her.”
Her family is trying to inform others that a person can live a healthy life after kidney donation, as her father has. He’s now in his 70s.
Imbasciani said it will just take one person to save her life.
“My case is a little bit more rare because my blood type, and I’ve had a transplant in the past, that my antibodies are so high, that it’s going to make it that much harder for me to get a match, but we try and that’s all we can do,” she said.
Imbasciani is also enrolled in a program that would allow two donors who match different people to basically swap, so both recipients get the better match. They said you do not need to be a perfect blood type match to help her.
“You’re saving a life, and just think: Wouldn’t you want somebody to do that for you, if that was you, and you were in that position?” Imbasciani said. “Everybody deserves a chance at life, everybody.”
Hope remains that the right match is out there and that a complete stranger will call the number to offer the gift of more time.
“The network of friends that we’ve had have been just phenomenal, from co-workers to family, to strangers, friends, it’s just surreal, really,” Danielle Moussally said. “We’re really grateful. We really, really are.”
Join the discussion with the family and the Life Alliance Organ Recovery Agency this Tuesday at noon on the WPTV Facebook page to answer your questions and offer ways you can help the family and others who are waiting for your life-saving call.