April 1, 2009

ICYMI – Natalie Cole last night – gets offers for new kidney

Posted: 07:36 AM ET

Singer Natalie Cole was on LKL last night telling us that she is searching for a kidney after an illness caused both of her kidneys to fail.

Before she finished telling King Tuesday night about her battles with drugs, illnesses and her search for a kidney, dozens of e-mails flooded the CNN studio.

They were all offers from people saying they would get tested to see whether their kidney could be donated.

King handed a thick stack of paper to Cole.  "These are all e-mails from dozens - dozens of people offering to be tested to see if they can match, who want to give you a kidney," King said.

Cole stared at the papers for a moment.

"There are some great human beings out there. That's all I can say," Cole said.


Filed under: Larry King Live

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Allan   April 1st, 2009 10:09 am ET

I agree with Lisa. I was on dialysis for almost three and a half years and finally received a kindney from a 20 year old cadaver. My problem was congenital in nature and was not caused by drug abuse.
There are over 70,000 people waiting on the transplant list, waiting for that phone call. What gives Natalie Cole the right to march ahead of all of these people? Because she's famous, or has the right contacts? She should probably run for Congress and join the rest of the crowd of elitists. Furthermore, Larry King should hang his head in shame for allowing this to be telecast. How about having a story a week of a person waiting for a kidney that isn't as famous as Natalie Cole and who more likely deserves the gift of life. It has been 15 years since my transplant and I know what it's like to wait. What gives her the right to march ahead of everyone that is waiting? I feel sorry for her but I feel more empathy for those who are not "important" enough to have a shill speaking on their behalf.

david kline   April 1st, 2009 10:24 am ET


John Mitas   April 1st, 2009 10:52 am ET

Mr. King and Ms. Natalie Cole,
I saw the show!! This was so amazing to me....NOT!!! Sorry, I can not remember the exact words of what and how Natalie said things because I was so up set and teed off!!

Today is the first day of April and it is DONATE LIFE MONTH. What a hell of a way to start! This blog is NOT an April Fools joke!!!!!!

As Natalie Cole was speaking I could not believe what I was seeing and hearing! Right there on live Television!! She say's, well needing a Kidney is "NOT" a life threatening situation! As I was listening I thought WOW she is so in denial. Then Natalie said that she is needs a living donor, and if someone was willing to donate a Kidney they would have to wait until after she has finished with her season, (AS if she only needed and oil change but it can just wait.....). What kind of crap is that!! The people I know would drop what ever they were doing, where ever they were, in order to receive a Kidney In my opinion, this one show has the potential to have a major set back for everyone in need of a Kidney. Then right in the middle she say's, can we talk about my singing now? But Larry King asked her how she figured it was not life threatening? Natalie replied that a heart transplant or a liver transplant was a life threatening situation, and that needing a Kidney was not. I said ARE YOU KIDDING ME!! Her whole attitude was just so freake'n unreal This whole interview just blew me out of the water. Evidently money means more to her than life.

I do not know if she has any idea of how many people die everyday waiting for a Kidney and she acts like oh well what ever!? I personally have never witnessed some dieing while at dialysis but a very special friend has. The way Natalie approached this is like it is a damn walk in the park and I will take care of this when ever I can get around to it

Liver Recipient 11-14-01. A huge large Thank you!!! I have more appreciation than I can ever share, to my Donor and Donor family who ever they may be? For this fantastic second chance at life and the greatest gift of all the GIFT of LIFE I am constantly thinking of you

California Gold   April 1st, 2009 12:42 pm ET

Last night I watched Natalie Cole on Larry King. I tried very hard to not feel offended as the interview progressed. Natalie Cole's motive was to get a kidney donation and eventually it came out her situation isn't grave. Donors can hold on to their body parts for another 9 months because she is busy. Larry King tried to rehabilitate the urgency and Natalie Cole wouldn't buy into it. Her needs are one thing and don't get her wrong, she wants another kidney, but right now it's not convenient, therefore, possible donors please proceed to the line to see if you are a match for Natalie Cole and if you are then you have to cool your heels until she can work you in. This viewer shook her head. Made me think of David Crosby and his liver transplant, and the complaints of how "stars" get bumped to the top of the list and the ordinary citizen has to live with fear, lingering health and try to keep their hopes as their health fails.

Larry King: shame on you for giving another "star" a platform to plead for help for herself. Why don't you offer interviews with ordinary children, mothers, fathers, regular citizens who need kidneys instead of another privileged junkie, recovered, relapsed and re-recovered junkie star. Ordinary folks won't shove off donors because they are too important and too busy to take time out of their very important and very busy schedules for a transplant. Natalie Cole: shame on you. The world doesn't revolve around you sweetheart.

Yvette,Bruce & Tyler Reome   April 1st, 2009 2:14 pm ET

I wanted to share our story with you Larry and Natalie as well. Our son Tyler, now almost 15, was diagnosed a year ago with Chronic Kidney Disease and is currently on Peritoneal Dialysis which we do at home every night for 10 hours. We will be meeting with a transplant team in Syracuse NY sometime in April or May of this year to begin the process of looking for a donor kidney. Tyler's was the result of a birth defect but it was never discovered until last year. I think that the most important things that we have learned from this are promoting awareness and also to encourage people to become organ donors. Good luck to you Natalie!

Elisabeth   April 1st, 2009 3:38 pm ET

Natalie Cole's appearance on Larry King highlighted the ongoing need for organ transplants in this country. Today, more than 100,000 people are on our nation's wait list for an organ transplant - with nearly 80,000 people awaiting a kidney transplant. April is National Donate Life Month, a time for heightening awareness of the benefits of organ donation and encouraging Americans to "say yes" to organ donation.

marge entemann   April 1st, 2009 4:02 pm ET

I greatly admire N. Cole, but information last night was incorrect. Hepatitus C transmission is caused by direct blood contact, not limited to drug use, transfusions and tatoos. Incomplete info like this makes it very difficult for those who have hepatitus C and have not committed these behaviors. There are many other ways that contact can occur, including inadequately sterilized medical instruments and some fluid transfers. A recent Las Vegas clinic contamination was in the news.

Sonni Irwin   April 1st, 2009 4:59 pm ET

Larry, your interiviews are always so enlightening. Last night's with Natalie Cole-awesome. What courage that lady has. I wish her a long life with minimum of suffering. She has come a long way in her life and his heartening to see her talent did not go wasted.

Shawn   April 1st, 2009 5:24 pm ET

I think that Natilies decision to get a kidney is a good one. I've never had to have a kidney or even dyalisas but if it saves your life go for it.

Susie Maggio   April 1st, 2009 5:49 pm ET

Ms Cole,

I have not had an easy life by any strech of the imagination. There were many times when drugs were laid out like a buffet, alchohol flowing etc and I had a choice to make. Based on my choice I would go on Larry King and beg for help if I had to because my life means and has always meant that much to me. You accepting help from strangers facinated with the link to music royalty is classless and in the poorest taste. I love your music and admired your father, but you are a woman just like me and we both had to walk in the world, and both were expected to do our best. You didn't, this is a product of the blatent disregard you had for your body. I would comfort you, be supportive, and care for you, but I would never advise you to take that which is not yours to take.

Johnny L. Green   April 1st, 2009 6:28 pm ET

I read the story on Natalie Cole. I would also like to be considered as a kidney donor for Natalie. Please forward this information to any concerned parties. Thanks in advance. Johnny L. Green.

Karyn   April 1st, 2009 8:19 pm ET

Dear Natalie,

I am a very big fan of yours. I had a very close girl friend of mine who went through dialysis, kidney problems, etc. who died. I have been put on the registry to be a donor of any of my organs to anyone to whom it will help save a life.

God bless you, Natalie! You'll be in my thoughts and prayers.

Nikki   April 1st, 2009 9:02 pm ET

I just want to send my best wishes to Natalie Cole. I saw her at the McCallum theater in Palm Desert CA back in 2002. That night was fantastic. Living a day to day struggle with cerebral palsy can be arduous at times, but I have never let my " different ability" define my character. Natalie, you are defined by your vim, vigor and vitality. Remember sweetie, life is like a jazz tune; sometimes you get a bad chord but sometimes you have to pick up the tempo. Stay Strong!
Much love,
Nikki- CA

janalle wallace   April 1st, 2009 11:41 pm ET

I am praying for Natalie Cole. I wish her all the best

tracy   April 2nd, 2009 12:21 am ET

I am not sure who to notify; but I also would be tested to donate a kidney to Ms. Natalie Cole.

Amanda   April 2nd, 2009 12:46 am ET

I watched the show with Natalie Cole and I was very moved by how strong she is and has been through all of her health issues. It would an honor for me to be considered as well a donor for her as well. God works in mysterious ways and I know he will give you a donor. God bless to Natalie Cole and her family.

karen   April 2nd, 2009 2:30 am ET

unlike ms. cole, my friend does not have a famous name to be able to go on TV and beg for a kidney. my friend is a mother and grandmother who does not smoke, drink and has NEVER done drugs. ms. cole is able to collect a paycheck by doing shows and appearing on tv. my friend is on dialasys three nights a week and is unable to return to work. i was furious at the show last night. what makes ms. cole think she can use her fame to bypass the three year wait list for a kidney!!!! my friend is the middle class american who has worked her whole life for what little she has. it is unfortunate that ms. cole has kidney failure but she abused her body and that is the price you pay. it is larry hagman all over again. use your fame to get to the top of the donor list while regular everday joes are about to lose what little they have because dialasys has put them out of work. UNFAIR, UNJUST AND CRUEL!!!! my friend is located in Allentown, PA if anyone would wish to get tested and be a match, her name is Deb Majerich and I hope she makes it to see her grandson who is now 3 graduate high school - she is a wonderful lady and deserves her 15 minutes of fame to save her life.

Truman   April 2nd, 2009 3:38 am ET

I feel sorry for Natalie but with the recent recession, i can only trade my kidney if i am a match. i have been jobless for almost 3 months and not even sure if i will get a job soon. Too many responsibilities with less or no money. I wish you all the best Ms Cole!

Soraya Kohanzadeh   April 2nd, 2009 9:28 am ET

I completely feel for your friend, but I think you are missing something. Ms. Cole is NOT trying to jump to the front of the list, she is trying to get a living donor, if she gets a living donor she will be OFF the cadaver list allowing the people below her to move UP on the list 🙂 Granted I don't agree that she should be allowed to come on national TV and ask for a kidney, I certainly didn't get that chance, but she is not trying to get herself to the top of the list. Does your friend know ANYONE willing to donate, friends, family, co-workers?

Karyn   April 2nd, 2009 10:38 am ET

Could someone please e-mail me a link so I can get tested to see if I'm a match to give up one of my kidney's to Natalie or to any one else who needs a kidney? I am in perfect health.

Nathan Gutierrez   April 2nd, 2009 1:12 pm ET

I watched the interview and was absolutely appalled by Natalie's non-chalant behavior towards her own health. She obviously is in denial about the severity of the situation. Larry was absolutely correct when he asked her if being on dialysis meant that her kidney failure was life-threatening....absolutely it is at that point. There are four stages of renal failure, and at Stage Four, you are automatically put on dialysis and are in dire need of a transplant. Also, Natalie acted as if dialysis is not a big deal. She probably has not been on there long enough to have suffered through cramping of the muscles, throwing up, and feeling horrible in general. In my heart, I truly do hope she eventually receives a transplant, but I don't respect the fact that she was asking for a kidney on national television and at the same time, promoting dialysis, and also a specific dialysis company...Davita. I question her motives for this.

As to the people who feel as though they are being generous in offering up their own kidney, I realize that some of them may be genuine, but I don't believe all of them are acting in the interest of saving a life. There are a lot of opportunists in this world, and this is a perfect opportunity for that. Why not be known as the person who saved Natalie Cole from certain death? Why not profit monetarily from it? (which by the way, is illegal)

I more recently received a transplant from my father, and I'm very grateful for that. However, I had to go through months and months of testing, had multiple offers from friends and strangers in my town to donate to me, but once they discovered the process of what it takes to donate, they backed out. I was on hemodialysis 3 days a week, 3 hours per treatment for over 2 1/2 years and hated every minute of it. I can't respect those who don't even have the respect for themselves and take responsibilities for their own lives. I would've dropped whatever I was doing if I had an immediate offer for a kidney, but Natalie doesn't seem to care...SHAMELESS

Sy   April 2nd, 2009 3:51 pm ET

I may sound like a selfish SOB, but as a nobody on kidney dialysis who lost his kidney function from diabetes and high blood pressure thinks that the "1000 of responders" whom offered their kidneys to somebody can offer their kidneys to the thousands of nobody who need a kidney.

tracy   April 2nd, 2009 4:27 pm ET

I also would test for your friend Deb. My nephew's young life was saved by a kidney transplant and I am forever thankful to organ donation! God works in mysterious ways. I am 37 years old and have good kidney health to the best of my knowledge. I am willing to donate a kidney to save anyone that can use it. I only need to find a way to help take care of my 7 year old daughter while I am in the hospital for the surgery and for the recovery. God bless!

Joe   April 2nd, 2009 6:44 pm ET

I did not see the episode, but after I read the article about it the next day on the website, yes, I was a bit mad. My wife has been on dialysis since June of 2005 and was finally put on the transplant list in December of 2007. She's now ready to be tested at a second hospital to be on their transplant list because she is ready for a kidney. When either of us hear about these celebs that go on national tv and cry and plead for help because of their illnesses, and then get help right away, it makes me sick. My wife didn't ask for kidney disease. Hers came from diabetes, not from either drugs or however else. We've done fundraisers, tried to inform people of the need to donate. Has she had any offers? No. Most people don't realize that the receipants insurance company will pay for the testing and the hospital stay. Short term disability may pay the donor while they are recovering. Education is biggest thing for people to do when it comes to organ donation.

Jacqueline   April 2nd, 2009 8:16 pm ET

I wanted to write and wish Ms. Cole good luck in finding a donor and in her life in general. She is a good woman and her father was a good man and a great musician. But my father is also a good man, a great father and husband to my mother. He has never done drugs. He doesn’t smoke or drink. He has worked hard all his life! His only functioning kidney failed him two years ago. He is currently on two transplant lists and they are both telling him it will take five years or more before he might receive a kidney. My mother and I am not a match for him and neither are any of his siblings. What I want to know is how many of the people who offered their kidneys to Ms. Cole would be willing to donate to the strongest man I know? It only takes one.

Joan Lando   April 3rd, 2009 12:22 am ET

To Larry King: Please do a show about the protocol pioneered by Dr. Stanley Jordan and Cedars-Sinai, the doctor who transplanted George Lopez and Cojo. With the Cedars protocol it is now possible to match anyone who needs a kidney with any healthy living donor no matter blood type or tissue match. Cedars is able to take care of the incompatibility problem (antibodies). This protocol went through NIH clinical trials in 2000 and has been approved and paid for by Medicare since 2004. Medicare regulations allow anyone in kidney failure to refer themselves to any transplant center who can help them. If anyone has healthy living donor offers, Cedars-Sinai now is able to make people a match over 90% of the time. Google "Youtube How I got my kidney transplant against all odds" for the details. Any one can call Cedars and ask for an evaluation. My daughter Soraya and I were not a match but Cedars lowered Soraya's antibodies and the transplant went forward. That was three years ago and she is healthy and happy and teaching school again. We have been astounded that no national media figure has told the public. We have gotten local San Francisco coverage: Go to the Media page on sevenluckystars. It would be a great service to all those languishing on dialysis who have family and friends offering kidneys but are turned down for reasons of blood type and tissue match for you to break this news to the public. Cedars has transplanted over 350 people successfully with incompatible kidneys. Many of these people would be glad to tell their stories on your show.

Soraya Kohanzadeh   April 3rd, 2009 12:30 am ET

I'd like to know why my comments were taken off. CNN moderators please let me know what I said that was inappropriate or inaccurate.
Thank you,

Sukie   April 4th, 2009 12:48 am ET

I have to be honest I was really quite appauled and offended by the Nicole King interview. I am in need of a kidney and have been so sick on dialysis. I can not believe that she has no sense of urgency in getting a kidney transplant. If it is no big deal to her and she is more worried about touring and making money than stopping everything if there is a ready donor, then maybe she should not be looking for a living donor and stay on the waiting list with those that have no alternative. It is obviously to easy for her! I wish it were that easy for the rest of us

Soraya Kohanzadeh   April 5th, 2009 12:48 am ET

please tell me how i violated the comment policy, I can not see anything in the post that you keep taking off that violates the policy.
Thank you

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