Meet the Bush sisters . . . Shayla and Ivy are ‘living full lives 10 years after kidney transplant’

These can be demanding and tiring days, what with all that is swirling around us, and that’s without Christmas fast approaching.

So it is great to find an escape, even if only for 15 or 20 minutes.

Allow me to present you with an opportunity for one of those brief interludes. Pour yourself a cup of your favourite coffee, tea or whatever soothes you, and enjoy the two stories that are linked here. . . .

It all starts in November 2010. Dave Trimmer was a sports writer with the Spokane Spokesman-Review when he wrote about Shayla and Ivy Bush, two sisters who were going through a life-altering experience.

Trimmer began his story like this:

“The words put a lump in your throat and moisten your eyes, but the touches and glances say so much more.”

He was referring to the young women’s story, one that he proceeded to tell in wonderful fashion.

By this time, the sisters, both of whom had been terrific high school athletes in Spokane, were situated on the U.S.’s east coast, Ivy in Baltimore and Shayla in Washington, D.C.

One year earlier, Shayla, who is five years older than Ivy, had gone in for a physical and come out knowing she had chronic kidney disease and would need dialysis or a transplant.

Their mother volunteered but, as Shayla told Trimmer, younger is better.

“My doctor asked about my sisters, and of course I had a problem with that,” she added.

There aren’t many things in life as hard as asking someone for one of their kidneys. And here was Shayla, the older sister, needing help from a younger sibling. But she finally called Ivy and asked the question.

“I went right into complete sister mode,” Ivy told Trimmer. “Of course I didn’t even have to think twice. I remember going into that initial meeting with the doctor, I had a feeling that everything was going to be OK. I remember walking past the chapel at the hospital and went in there and prayed, ‘Just let me be the one that can donate to Shayla.’ I knew after that everything was going to be OK and I was going to be the donor for Shayla.”

Ivy got through all of the tests and, yes, one of her kidneys now is part of her older sister.

Trimmer’s story from 10 years ago is right here, and you really should read it. This is just a wonderful piece about the love in a family and all of the emotions someone who needs a kidney experiences while dealing with having to ask for help.

And after you read that one, I have another treat for you.

Trimmer later lost his job — in case you haven’t noticed, the newspaper industry has been a sinking ship of uncertainty the past few years. But Trimmer returned to the pages of the Spokesman-Review the other day as he followed up with the women, who now are Shayla Harris and Ivy Lawrence.

The headline tells it all: Bush sisters living full lives 10 years after kidney transplant.

“Today,” Trimmer writes, “Shayla Harris and Ivy Lawrence laugh easily and finish each other’s sentences, proof they are fulfilling that vow.

“ ‘Knock on wood,’ they say in unison, with one adding to great laughter, ‘That’s the kidney.’

“The past decade has given them much for which to be thankful.”

Trimmer’s follow-up story is right here, and it is guaranteed to make you smile. Hey, you may even shed a tear or two.


If you are interested in being a living kidney donor, more information is available here:

Living Kidney Donor Program

St. Paul’s Hospital

6A Providence Building

1081 Burrard Street

Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y6

Tel: 604-806-9027

Toll free: 1-877-922-9822

Fax: 604-806-9873



Vancouver General Hospital Living Donor Program – Kidney 

Gordon and Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre

Level 5, 2775 Laurel Street

Vancouver, BC V5Z 1M9

604-875-5182 or 1-855-875-5182


Or, for more information, visit right here.

Tabitha Paul’s father, Markus, was the strength-and-conditioning coach with the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. He suffered a medical emergency during a practice session on Tuesday morning and died Wednesday evening.

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