by Bill DiFilippo / @bflip33
Today in “things that gave us faith in humanity”: Robert Kirby, a first-year assistant coach for Memphis, donated a kidney to his sister on Tuesday.
Kirby’s mother passed away in 1996 from complications from kidney failure. His sister faced a similar ailment—she had only one functioning kidney—and Kirby was a match for a donation.
“My mother wouldn’t allow us to donate,” said Kirby, an assistant coach over three decades on the staffs at Arkansas-Little Rock, Houston, Southeastern Louisiana, Mississippi State, Georgetown and LSU. “She said she lived her life. She didn’t want any of us to do that. This was my sister and it was never a question mark if I would, but it was ‘could I.””
Kirby and other siblings went through a series of tests to determine a match. Kirby was the one. He went through many testings to make sure he could pass each one. In July, while recruiting at the Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C., for the Tigers, he was informed that he was a match for his sister.
It is anticipated that Kirby will be able to return to practice some time in the next few weeks.