WASHINGTON (FOX 5 DC) - A beloved Montgomery County Public Schools teacher is hopeful this holiday season brings him the gift of life.
“I’m already below stage 4... early stage 5,” said Robert Dickie of his kidney disease that was diagnosed two years ago.
Dickie is seeking a kidney match with a person who also shares his AB positive blood type.
“Right now, we are where we can manage it months to maybe a year,” Dickie explained. “It’s a lot to ask and say ‘Hey can I have a part of your body for my body?’”
Dickie has been a teacher with Damascus High School for the past 20 years.
“I have a 150 kids,” he said. “It’s just a beautiful thing to get to work with these kids, so I just want to keep doing that for the next 20 years.”
The high school teacher has been going in and out of the Georgetown University Hospital for various tests and treatments since his diagnosis.
He said that since the community heard about his condition, many people have been signing up to become a donor.
“It would give me great joy to help someone in this situation,” said 23-year-old Brandon Sellers, who recently moved to Damascus.
Sellers is one of three patients who is currently being tested as a potential match.
“I was very touched and I was really taken aback by his sense of adventure,” said Sellers.
It’s not the first time the high school teacher has battled a challenging health obstacle. A rappelling accident bound him to a wheelchair for the last 17 years.
“In no sense am I victim of anything,” said Dickie.
Dickie said he wants to fight to live for as long as possible because he has a purpose he is not yet done fulfilling.
“So that I can keep teaching for the next 15 to 20 years and that is my contribution to my community,” he said.
As for Sellers, match or no match, he said that he has made a friend in his new hometown of Damascus.
“After the holiday we’re gonna get some lunch,” he said.
Sellers is due to visit the hospital on Dec. 4 to be tested and screened. One other person who is the parent of a student has already been tested and another person is due for testing in Texas.