Back in 2006, at the age of 24, Ken Sutha received his living donor kidney transplant at Emory. His donor was none other than his own father. Four years later, not only has Ken made remarkable strides in his overall health, but even more amazing, he has gone from a non-athlete to a world class swimmer.
Ken practices each day after class at Georgia Tech, where he’s a student in the Emory and Georgia Tech MD/PhD program. Recently, his practice paid off in a big way. Back in August, Ken returned home from Madison, Wisconsin where he was a participant in the 2010 National Kidney Foundation (NKF) U.S. Transplant Games.
Representing Team Georgia, Ken competed in the 100-yard medley, 50-yard butterly, 100-yard backstroke, and 500-yard freestyle events. A tremendous feat for someone who underwent a life changing transplant. What’s even more impressive? Ken left the NKF U.S. Transplant Games with two gold medals and one silver medal. However, it was not the medals, but the experience, that left a lasting impression on Ken.
“My favorite part of the Games was meeting other recipients, living donors, and donor families,” Ken notes. “One of our Emory recipients, Sherrell Gay, celebrated her eighth anniversary of her heart transplant at the closing ceremony on Tues., Aug. 3,” he continues. “She competed in table tennis this year.”
Ken is a shining example that those who undergo solid organ transplants are able to return to a normal high-quality life, and often, can achieve a level of health they never reached prior to transplant. In addition to swimming, Ken competes in sprint triathlons to stay in shape. His last sprint was at the Rock ‘N Rollman Triathlon in June in Macon, GA. We will continue to keep you posted on Ken’s remarkable achievements.
Or, if you’re interested in learning more about the games or kidney transplant from Ken, please leave your questions in the comments below. Ken will be responding to any questions you have for him!