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Billy Gillispie says “things are going fantastic” following kidney transplant. “(God) delivered my angel in my biggest time of need in my life.”

PHOTO: Mayo Clinic News Network

Yesterday afternoon, former Kentucky basketball head coach Billy Gillispie received a new kidney from stranger Ericka Downey.

Today, Gillispie is reportedly up and moving, even going on an afternoon walk with the gracious donor.

The former Kentucky coach had been experiencing major health issues over the last year or so, and was hospitalized in January for kidney failure due to chronic high blood pressure.

Downey reached out to Gillispie and finally met with him in San Antonio at the Final Four.. After running tests, it was determined Downey’s kidney was a match, and the procedure was approved.

“I was just sitting on the floor cleaning and I took a break,” Downey told the Charleston Gazette-Mail back in March. “I came across a story in the Dallas Morning News about Coach Gillispie. I just immediately felt I was supposed to help.”

Just a month later, the 90-minute procedure was completed, and both Gillispie and Downey are “doing great.”

“She’s doing great and I’m doing great,” Gillispie said in an interview with the Dallas Morning News today. “You never know when things change, but right now things are going fantastic.”

The former Kentucky coach then opened up about the process and how thankful he is for Downey’s selfless act.

“I said, ‘I don’t really know how we got to this point, with you being here, other than God’s grace,” Gillispie said. “He delivered my angel in my biggest time of need in my life. It’s just unbelievable.’

Gillispie is expected to be discharged from the Mayo Clinic on Friday, but will stay in Rochester, MN for a couple weeks to make sure his new kidney continues to function well.

Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

7 Comments for Billy Gillispie says “things are going fantastic” following kidney transplant. “(God) delivered my angel in my biggest time of need in my life.”



  1. Blublood41
    10:20 pm April 25, 2018 Permalink

    God bless him



  2. Halfway 2 BioHazard
    11:20 pm April 25, 2018 Permalink

    Great news!



  3. Angelo
    1:12 am April 26, 2018 Permalink

    Great Lady! I just hope Billy doesn’t hit on her… And get arrested…



  4. IAmTheDanger
    7:28 am April 26, 2018 Permalink

    Wonder if he would do the same for someone, I have my doubts.



    • Sentient Third Eye
      9:01 am April 26, 2018 Permalink

      Give Billy Clyde a chance. Most people who go through something like this come out changed for the better. This experience might just have saved his life in more ways than just the one.



  5. Bluebloodtoo
    10:09 am April 26, 2018 Permalink

    Meh…hard to feel good for someone who caused their own issues by being too indulgent.



  6. DerBaron
    2:59 pm April 26, 2018 Permalink

    We’re all sinners and none of us saints. God does work in mysterious ways. Maybe Billy will use his second chance to go on and do wonderful things.