By creator to www.dallasnews.com
When her son, SMU junior defensive lineman DeVere Levelston, got here to her with the concept for a GoFundMe, Charena Levelston didn’t anticipate a lot. However then once more, with medical payments piling up and no present earnings, something would assist.
Charena’s minimal expectations have been exceeded in hours.
On Sunday morning, DeVere – a DeSoto alum and a Tyler Junior School switch – created a GoFundMe for Charena, whose kidneys have failed since January. She’s been out of labor since December. She undergoes peritoneal dialysis for 9 hours each evening whereas she sleeps.
DeVere wrote that no donation can be too little. As of Thursday afternoon, the GoFundMe had raised over $10,000.
“I used to be overwhelmed … I wasn’t anticipating the response we received,” mentioned Charena, who has 4 children, together with DeVere. “It was good, it was stunning, and I actually respect all of the love and assist.”
DeVere mentioned he was initially hesitant to begin the fundraiser when a teammate advised it, however after speaking together with his mom and different relations they figured it was value giving it a shot. The response, like his Mother, overwhelmed him.
“I used to be simply shocked I might get a lot publicity from the state of affairs,” mentioned DeVere, who performed in eight video games final yr in his first season at SMU, ending the yr with six tackles and a sack. “I didn’t anticipate folks would hear or click on on it.”
He figured his teammates and coaches would – his place coach, Chidera Uzo-Diribe donated $500, for instance – however he didn’t anticipate folks from throughout the nation to pitch in to assist his mother.
Earlier than kidney failure, Charena mentioned she labored at a distribution middle, choosing up, carrying and shifting packing containers. Then, in June 2020, medical doctors found that her kidney ranges had dropped. Her kidneys couldn’t operate on their very own when 2021 arrived. They advised her, finally, she would want a kidney transplant.
“It was a snowball impact,” Charena mentioned.
DeVere mentioned the final yr has positively been robust. He’s the oldest sibling of their household and he mentioned he’s been making an attempt to be an anchor for the household.
The response from the GoFundMe, although, has given them cause for optimism, and never simply due to the cash. Charena mentioned she’s had a number of folks attain out from the fundraiser questioning how they may get examined to see in the event that they’re a doable donor match for her.
It’s a tricky course of to discover a match, however she hopes she will be able to discover a donor within the subsequent yr.
“You need to let all of the doubt go and be pleased about day by day,” DeVere mentioned. “I’m grateful for day by day I’ve along with her and I do know there are higher days shifting ahead.”
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