You heard me right. I had the privilege to meet Rob Robinson, a firefighter from Starkville, Mississippi on September 24th at a men's retreat I was speaking at. Rob is a typical Mississippi boy. He hates Alabama football and loves turkey hunting. Rob began heading to Olathe, Kansas to hunt many years ago. His sister moved there and he was able to stumble into some incredible deer hunting. Like many of us, he saw the amount of turkeys in Kansas and decided to take up hunting Kansas turkeys as well. Early success allowed Rob to actually take largest typical bird in Kansas history. A score of 88 4/8 is still the record to this day.
Rob decided to head towards Northwest Kansas in search of rios. He didn't know anyone in the area, just loaded up, drove out, and started knocking on doors. By chance...nah, by God's appointment Rob knocked on the door of Kansas landowner Gil Alexander. Gil allowed Rob to hunt and after a week he was able to get a bird down. A few years later Rob headed back out and knocked on Gil's door once again. This time Rob asked if he could pitch a tent in Gil's yard (in the past he had slept in his car). Gil instead insisted that Rob sleep in the house, true country hospitality.
Rob noticed that Gil was on dialyses. Gil informed Rob that he was in need of a kidney transplant and his life was in jeopardy. After the hunt Rob made the long drive back home and the Lord began to work on his heart. Rob decided to be tested to see if he was a match for Gil, just a landowner he knew from Kansas who lived nearly 1,000 miles away. Turns out Rob's kidney was a perfect match. Rob informed Gil that he wanted to give him his kidney. "It blew my doors off," said Gil, who appropriately named his new kidney Mississippi. "I did a glory, hallelujah fit. I stated crying and praising God and crying and praising God. I didn't know what to think."
On November 26th of 2012 the transplant was performed and was a success. Both men would say it was the best Thanksgiving they have ever had. "I gave a gift to Gil, but I feel like I've been given a gift too," said Rob. "It wasn't random at all. God had a plan, it seems random, and in a sense it was, but it was meant to be." Rob has since founded Forever Outdoors with the goal to promote organ donation. You can follow Rob through Forever Outdoors on Facebook.
Link to Forever Outdoors Facebook Page