Skip to content

Yellowknife resident finally gets ‘magic call’ for kidney transplant

After waiting for over seven years for a a kidney transplant, Roy Dahl has finally received the “magic call,” as he refers to it with a great sense of relief.
Roy Dahl has been on the waiting list for a kidney transplant for over seven years, with Covid-19 extending the delay. However, as of Sunday, Dahl received the call and was quickly put on a medevac flight to Edmonton for surgery. Photo courtesy of Roy Dahl

After waiting for over seven years for a a kidney transplant, Roy Dahl has finally received the “magic call,” as he refers to it with a great sense of relief.

“When I first saw the number that came up on the screen, I initially thought, OK, maybe this is just a prank call or an investment firm wanting me to send them some money or something,” said Dahl. “But when I answered it, the doctor identified himself and told me the specifics of why he was calling, and then it sunk in that, finally, there’s been an answered prayer.”

RELATED REPORTING: Yk resident’s wait for kidney transplant stretches beyond seven years

Dahl, who answered the phone at around 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, said his first reaction was one of relief as he and his family could finally start seeing “the light at the end of the tunnel.”

“There’s been a lot of positive reaction to the news,” he said.

Following a chat with the doctor, Dahl would quickly find his way on a medevac to Edmonton by 10 a.m.

“As soon as I got down here, they brought me into the room and they started running tests. They had a series of tests to do throughout the day,” he said.

However, amid the positive news that Dahl has received, there has been a rather significant hiccup.

“The lack of support that we got from medical travel,” he said. “Medical travel deemed my wife as a non-medical professional and therefore was not eligible for support to be able to come down on the medevac with me.”

As well, accommodations were also not provided for his wife due to her being deemed non-essential, according to Dahl.

MLA Richard Edjericon got involved, providing airfare for Dahl’s wife.

Due to this, a $10,000 GoFundMe campaign, which currently sits at around $4,000, was created to help assist with other costs.

“We really, really appreciate the generosity that’s been expressed through the creation of a GoFundMe page to help us,” said Dahl.

As of Monday afternoon, Dahl had completed his medical tests and was waiting to go into surgery.

“(A) doctor came in and spoke to me… (he) said they’re awaiting the arrival of the kidney,” he said.

As for the identity of the donor? Dahl said he “knows nothing about the donated kidney,” and probably never well.

“The donor has requested privacy, so basically, we will never know where the kidney originated,” he said. “The only insurance I’ve had is it’s a very healthy kidney.”

For Dahl, the pending transplant marks a comforting end to what has been a rollercoaster of emotions. He’d been undergoing dialysis treatments three times per week since December 2014.

“It’s been a long haul to be sure,” he said. “Absolutely, there’s a lot of attention and due care that’s going to be required after the procedure but, you know, we’re up to the task. And I hope that I give this new organ a good home.

“If I can express anything, it’s certainly a debt of gratitude to everybody who has shown kindness, and support for us,” he added. “There’s been a lot of people sending me notes and sending my wife notes and expressing prayers for for fast healing and a quick recovery. So we really appreciate that.”