Man purchases billboard, hoping for kidney donation

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SUSSEX (WITI) -- A Sussex man is hoping that as Brewers fans leave the ball park this week, they have their eyes open. A unique billboard has gone up near Miller Park that is grabbing attention -- asking for help to save the man's life.

A billboard in the Menomonee Valley (near 25th and Canal Street) in Milwaukee is getting some second looks for its message.

51-year-old Jeff Nelson of Sussex suffers from polycystic kidney disease -- a genetic disorder that is rendering his kidneys useless.

"The kidneys just grow in size, and they get bigger and bigger and bigger, and they lose their function. The kidney failure is imminent, and I'm really at N stage renal failure," Nelson said.

For the past few years, Nelson has been looking for a donor with no luck.

"People have come forward. They've been tested, but they've been excluded for one reason or another," Nelson said.

Running out of options, Nelson decided to try a new method: a billboard with his picture and a message. The billboard costs Nelson $350 a month, but he says the attention is priceless.

The billboard can be spotted for drivers heading north on 25th Street off of Canal. Thanks to road construction on the interstate, traffic has picked up on the route.

"It's been up for about 10 days, and we've had a great response," Nelson said.

Nelson says while he's still looking for a match, the billboard is already making an impact.

"People have said they can't be a donor for me for a kidney but they are signing the back of their driver's license," Nelson said.

Nelson says he hopes he will find his match soon, or maybe find a match for another person in need.

"I'm hoping that this not only creates awareness for me and helps me, but I'm optimistic it's likely to help others as well," Nelson said.

Nelson says he got the idea for the billboard from a Wisconsin woman who was successful near Green Bay.

For more information, visit by CLICKING HERE.

Those who are interested in learning whether they would be a match can contact Froedtert Hospital's Living Donor Program at (414) 805-0310.

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