Ex-Panther Ma’ake Kemoeatu Gives Kidney to Brother


The Kemoeatu kidney transplant was a success. That was the word at yesterday’s press conference held by former Carolina Panther Ma’ake Kemoeatu and his former Pittsburgh Steeler brother Chris yesterday. The surgery that moved the kidney from one Kemoeatu to another was completed three weeks ago and has been denoted a success.

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Ma’ake actually left football in 2012 to prepare for donating his kidney to his younger brother Chris. Chris had been forced from the league a year earlier due to reoccurring kidney problems dating back to middle school.

You may be wondering why Ma’ake and Chris waited some eighteen months before having the kidney procedure. The answer had to do with a heart procedure that Chris would need to complete before he could receive a new kidney. That other surgery was only completed in June, allowing the kidney procedure to go forward in August.

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  • Ma’ake said to reporters that the decision to donate was never really in doubt. He was the elder brother and he had to look out for his younger brother. He made the comment that if his family ever needed anything from him, he would give it. In this case it just happened to be a kidney. Ma’ake even ended his playing career to show solidarity with his brother, who could not play anymore.

    Ma’ake was a Carolina Panther for three years from 2006-2008, where it was hoped that he could help fill the void left by Kris Jenkins. He averaged around 30 tackles a season and his role was to fill space and disrupt the run on early downs. He was cut for salary reasons in 2009.
    In a time where the NFL is drowning in stories about violence, it is nice to see a story about brothers being brothers.

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