Uber driver donates kidney to a passenger, goes viral
Uber driver donates kidney to a passenger, goes viral Image Credit: Facebook

Tim Letts, a US Army veteran who was an Uber driver in New Jersey, went out of his way to help a man who needed kidney transplantation.

A 73-year-old man, Bill Sumiel, developed diabetes around 20 to 30 years ago and suffered kidney failure in his later years.

According to local news reports, doctors told him he needed a kidney transplant and should be actively looking for a kidney rather than waiting on the transplant list.

Sumiel needed to get home from his regular treatment at the dialysis centre. So the New Jersey resident called for an Uber and met his driver, Letts, at the centre.

Talking to a news channel, Letts, recalled Sumiel’s pick-up point was further away from where he was, and he went to pick him up.

When Letts picked Bill up at the dialysis centre, the two men had a chat during the ride.

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After finding out that Tim was a veteran, enjoyed fishing, and drove Uber on weekends to make extra money, Bill said he needed a kidney transplant.

“Tim was so friendly that I felt at ease explaining what was going on in my life,” said Sumiel.

After the talk, Letts decided to donate his kidney to Sumiel. When Tim arrived at Bill’s house, he left his name and number, indicating that he was serious about his offer. Before receiving the kidney, Sumiel had been on the transplant list for three and a half years.

Sumiel felt grateful but was also concerned that Letts’s Kidney wouldn’t be a match. However, after the tests, Tim was told he was ‘an outstanding match’ and was approved by the transplant team. Then, in December 2021, the two underwent successful surgery.

“I was over the top excited,” Tim said. According to his family, Letts has infinite compassion. He joined the Army at 17 because of his strong drive to help others, and he’s always looked for ways to do some good in the world.

Recently, celebrating the anniversary of their successful surgery in December 2022, Sumiel had a heartwarming reunion with the Uber driver who saved his life with a kidney donation. On January 14, Sumeil shared a photo of Letts and him in the hospital on his Facebook page, which has since gone viral on social media and continues to gain momentum.

In a recent interview with a local news source, Letts recalled: “He gets in my car. And he’s got this brilliant personality, and after just a few minutes with him, it was evident that he was the special kind of humble and kind person.”

“I could see in the rearview mirror this hopelessness. He looked like he was at the end of his road,” Letts added.

Apparently, Letts considered donating a kidney his entire life as he always “felt a calling to give”.

Letts now lives in Germany, and Sumiel stays in touch with his forever friend who saved his life.

Knowing about this heartwarming incident, social media users couldn’t stop showering them with blessings and applause.

“How beautiful. What the world needs more of,” wrote an Instagram user @msabergreene.

Another Instagram user, @juliaspunt commented on the post: “This might be the most amazing act of unselfish kindness and generosity I’ve ever heard of. I’m speechless. God Bless them both!”