Mother uses social media to find kidney donor

Posted at 5:02 PM, Feb 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-17 17:27:27-05
Joe Richmond’s silver Camaro shines in the sunlight, but he still feels like he’s slacking in the car care department.
“I haven’t been able to clean it as much as I normally do. When I had my Charger, I was out there every day washing and waxing it constantly,” he said.
Joe, 22, was born with Alport Syndrome, a genetic disease that took away much of his hearing and now use of his kidney.
He spends hours every day on dialysis and desperately needs to find a donor.
“The only motivation someone has to do something like that is just the goodness within them,” Richman said.
“He’s facing his own mortality and it’s scary,” said his mother, Dana.
Despite his health struggles, Joe is still close to getting his college degree and plans to go to medical school and become a surgeon.
Then he can help others who are facing the same struggles.
“You learn so much. You almost kind of get a medical degree just having the condition because you have to know so much just to maintain yourself,” Richman said.
Like any parent would, Joe’s mother is doing everything she can to get her son a new kidney.
That includes spreading the word with the #akidneyforjoey hash tag on Twitter and Facebook.
“You are asking someone you’ve never met before to save your child, that you can’t do it yourself. You have to reach out to others,” Dana Richman said.
“It’s definitely weighing on me a lot more than it used to. But I’m optimistic about the future of it all and getting through it,” said Joe.
He’s got a loving family, a sweet ride, and a positive attitude. 
Now all Joe needs to live a long happy life is a new kidney.
For more information on helping Joe, contact Jenni Binns of Tampa General Hospital at 813-844-5669 or