As some of you may know my brother has spent the last few months going through difficult times with his kidney. Seldom do we have stories in our own lives that are truly spectacular and trustworthy—stories that relate the hope of humanity. Recently, I witnessed a testament of this “goodness” in my small community.

My brother, Doug Floyd, who is now 42 was diagnosed with kidney disease when he was 18 years old. He went for a routine physical at a summer employer. Because of high blood pressure he was immediately hospitalized and underwent emergency surgery to extract the diseased kidney. Although the diseased kidney desperately needed to undergo a biopsy (to reveal any information about his remaining kidney), it was not meant to be. Through the improper preparation and packaging of the kidney, the kidney never made it to the laboratory. My non-litigious parents refused to sue—they didn’t know at the time that the other son would be a lawyer.

Doug aspired, on the other hand, to go into the ministry and help people for little or no compensation. After first rising through the ranks of “big” church, Doug’s flare for innovation drew him to smaller venues—much smaller. He focused his graduate work on developing meaningful communities. After finishing his master’s degree he began a house church where only a few families attend.

Over the years, Doug’s diseased kidney continued to decline in function. In the spring of 2006, his doctor said that his kidney could no longer provide sustenance, and he began dialysis. He was given the option to conduct dialysis from home, so an army of volunteers were assembled to convert his basement into a home dialysis clinic.

Then one brave young man from our small church community committed to donate his own kidney to his lifelong friend, mentor, and pastor. Izaak Standridge, 21, a rising junior at Maryville College took a different course than most College students his age. Rather than work internships, travel, or kick back, Izaak sacrificed his own kidney and summer for the benefit of Doug.

The two met many years ago at a local growing church where Doug was the youth pastor. The Standridge family (eight is enough: six children and two parents) moved to Florida for a few years, and Doug perused his graduate work in Virginia. Eventually Doug moved back to Knoxville, and a few years later the Standridges also returned. At this time, Izaak was a teenager, and Doug and Izaak began a meaningful mentoring relationship. When Doug started his house church, the Standridge family was founding members.

When asked why he would be willing to undergo such a major undertaking for his pastor Izaak said, “I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for Doug.” Izaak attributes much of his success in college to the relationship with Doug. Upon entering, he wrote an essay about Doug in which he was awarded $10,000 per year. Certainly his parents have taught him lessons that you cannot learn in school.

While finding a donor is sometimes difficult with so many criteria to match, the match between Doug and Izaak is said to be as good as a family member. On June 14, 2006 Doug and Izaak are scheduled to undergo the transplant procedure. The two will likely spend the remainder of their summers recovering. Living with Doug my whole life, I know that this is truly a blessing and opportunity to live a more normal life. Knowing Izaak for many years, I am proud to know someone of such strong character and conviction. My hat is off to you.

I will post occassional updates on the status of their surgery and recovery.

Jeremy Floyd

Jeremy Floyd is the President at FUNYL Commerce. Formerly, he was the CEO and President of Lirio, Bluegill Creative, a marketing and communications firm in Knoxville, Tennessee. In addition to managing the digital strategies, Floyd was an adjunct professor for the University of Tennessee Chattanooga MBA program teaching digital strategies and social media. Floyd blogs at and tweets under the name @jfloyd. Jeremy is licensed to practice law in the State of Tennessee and holds a law degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from MTSU in English and Philosophy.

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  • tim standridge

    Hey Jeremy ,
    As the father of the donor , I’d like to say that you also have been a BIG part of Izaak’s life . My whole family loves both You an Doug , and your wife’s and extented family . I could go on and on about how YOU and Doug have helped my son .
    When Izaak , as well as all my children where born I gave them to the ” Lord ” , then let go to see what HE would do with them . I must say it has been one wild trip .
    Thank you for starting this blog .
    luv ya’ dude man

  • Cliff Friedman

    Jeremy, I was directed here by Professor Reynolds. I donated my wife a kidney 5 years ago. She and I are doing fine. As for me, the kidney was harvested laproscopically and it could not have been easier. The transplant was on a Wednesday, I was home by Friday and off paid meds by Monday. Back at work and close to full speed in two weeks. Probably could have been back to work quicker if I needed to. Best of luck to all involved. Feel free to pass my e-mail address to Doug or Izzy if they would like to talk to another donor.

  • jeremyfloyd

    Thanks Cliff, I sent your information on to Izaak and Doug.

  • Rita Moore

    Hey Jeremy,
    Thanks for putting this story together. I learned alot!! For example, I hadn’t known the details about the reason why the kidney was not biopsied in the beginning or about Izaak’s scholarship.
    I am glad to be able to see true humanity at work, an example of true brotherly love. As a mother I can quickly say that I would lay down my life for my children….but for anyone else? That would take some serious consideration (because ofcourse I have my children to think of first:-).) I know that I am not wasting my time in the circle of friends in which God has placed me because these people know what matters, what’s real, and by Izaak’s example at least , a little bit about the love of Christ.:-)

  • Doug and Izaak are in our prayers. Amazing story that God has had a hand in from day 1. May the Lord bless.

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  • Janet Smith

    My favorite scripture is John 15:13…and it so applies to Doug & Izaak: “No greater love than this…that a man lay down his life for his friend.”. What a real life inspiration we have in Doug & Izaak as to what Jesus was referring to. Thanks Jeremy for keeping us all in the loop! Love from us to you guys…Janet (Crooks) Smith

  • What a wonderful real life story. There are still very good people in this world. Donna is a good friend of mine. You can’t get any better people than the Standridge family. I have heard great stories about Doug. My thoughts and prayers are with both families.

  • Lori Crabtree

    My thoughts and prayers are with Doug, Izaak, and both families. Your friend, Lori

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