A Rolla family has spent almost a month waiting by the phone, and they still are, as Kyle Hardy – a Rolla city council member and Turtle Mountain Community High School teacher and coach – awaits a double lung transplant to treat Cystic Fibrosis.
Kyle Hardy is a familiar face in the Rolla and Rolette County areas.
A recent routine-visit to check on his Cystic Fibrosis led to a three-week hospital stay AND placement on the double-lung transplant list for the 31-year-old.
KX News sat down with him and his dad, Rolla Mayor John Hardy, to learn more.
“Doctors have told me I’m a medical anomaly,” Kyle Hardy said with a laugh.
He was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis before he was one.
Thirty years later, “My lung function is at 22 percent,” he said. “They can’t figure out how I’m not on oxygen.”
Hardy learned that at the end of May when he went for a check-up in Minneapolis to prepare for a trip to Europe with his students.
“Kyle was fine going in the appointment and then they said, ‘not only are you not going to Europe but we’re going to admit you into the hospital today,” Hardy’s father, John, recalled.
On June 12th, he was added to the double-lung transplant list.
A few weeks later, he was able to go back home to Rolla, where he and his family are spending every day waiting for the phone call that will change his life.
KX News asked, “What is day-to-day like? Are you waiting for the phone to ring?”
“Yeah, unfortunately,” Hardy replied. “It’s a day full of anxiety, pretty much.”
When the call does come, a flight will be arranged to pick him up in Rolla and bring him to Minneapolis for the 12-hour surgery, which Hardy and his dad both agree that it’s a scary situation, but it’s also one that’s full of hope.
“They say your lung function goes anywhere from 80 to 90, like it goes back to 80 to 90 percent,” Hardy explained, “and I haven’t had that since I was probably in high school.”
“We have friends that have been through transplants for CF, and post-transplant they’re doing absolutely wonderfully, and that’s what Kyle’s looking forward to,” John added.
Hardy said he looks forward to simple things like walking without getting winded.
His community continues to show support, which leaves Hardy feeling short of words instead of short of breath.
“I’m just looking forward to what’s to come, a better outlook,” he said. “I can’t thank people enough for what they’ve done…it’s incredible, to say the least. It’s just nice to know people care.”
The Hardys estimate between medical costs, cost of living, travel for monthly check-ups in Minneapolis, the transplant will ultimately cost about 100,000 dollars out of pocket.
There will be a benefit Tuesday, July 9 starting at 3:00 pm on Main Ave in Rolla.
A silent auction will be from 3:00-7:30 and a meal from 5:00-7:00 pm.
The Cystic Fibrosis Association of North Dakota can also match up to 30,000 dollars to help him out as well, so donations there would make a huge difference.
If you’d like to donate, please send your donation to:
Cystic Fibrosis Association of ND
921 S 9th St Suite 115, Bismarck ND 58504 – Kyle Hardy Transplant fund