News Release: Emory Healthcare, School of Medicine

May 22,  2009

Iraq and Afghanistan War Veteran Donates Life to Son's Little League Teammate

As a soldier in the U.S. Army who has served tours of duty in both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Corey Myers could certainly be described with adjectives including brave, strong and patriotic.

Some might now opt to call him life-saving hero little league baseball coach dad.   

When a routine sports physical showed alarmingly high blood pressure in an otherwise seemingly healthy 7-year-old Nicholas Story, who is a little league baseball teammate of Corey's son Jacob, his doctor noted two possible causes: obesity (of which lean, athletic Nicholas was the antithesis), or kidney malfunction.

What his doctor never guessed was that they would soon learn that Nicholas had been missing his right kidney for his entire life, and that his lone left kidney was only partially working. Nicholas would need a kidney transplant, and with his rare blood type, his donor pool was scarce.

With her father also battling kidney disease, Nicholas Story's mother Rebecca confided her fears in a fellow Army wife, Julie, during a routine night walk around Fort Benning. Fort Benning is a self-sustaining military community supporting more than 100,000 military, family members, reserve component soldiers, retirees and civilian employees.

With their husbands' combined absences, Rebecca and Julie had become best friends, as had their baseball teammate sons. Julie shared her friend's troubles with husband Corey who, like Rebecca’s husband, is a First Sergeant with the Infantry in the U.S. Army.

When Myers, now a First Sergeant with B Company, 4th Ranger Training Battalion in Fort Benning, Ga., learned of Nicholas’ need for a new kidney and that his O-positive blood type was an acceptable match for Nicholas, he selflessly offered himself as a donor.

"I wanted to do this," Myers said. "I have seen a lot of things in my military career. I have seen death. I really didn't want to have to see my son deal with that with Nicholas being his best friend.

"This was an opportunity to do something and help Nick, and let Nick live a normal life."

Given his superior physical condition, Corey easily passed the medical qualifications required of an organ donor. Myers' motivating forces were two-fold: to keep his own son's best friend and teammate on the playing field, and to help a fellow soldier whom he was confident would do the same for him under adverse conditions.

On April 28, 2009, transplant surgeons at Emory University Hospital led by Nicole Turgeon, MD, removed Myers's kidney, while just across the street, little Nicholas awaited in an operating room at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta to receive from Emory University surgeons Christopher Larsen, MD, and Thomas Pearson, MD, the gift from his best friend’s dad, baseball coach … and now All-American Hero.


The Robert W. Woodruff Health Sciences Center of Emory University is an academic health science and service center focused on missions of teaching, research, health care and public service. Its components include schools of medicine, nursing, and public health; Yerkes National Primate Research Center; the Emory Winship Cancer Institute; and Emory Healthcare, the largest, most comprehensive health system in Georgia. The Woodruff Health Sciences Center has a $2.3 billion budget, 17,000 employees, 2,300 full-time and 1,900 affiliated faculty, 4,300 students and trainees, and a $4.9 billion economic impact on metro Atlanta.

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