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When they lost their son on March 14, 2014, Mark and Denise Patton began giving back to others in his memory – especially those diagnosed with kidney disease.
By IU Health Senior Journalist T.J. Banes, firstname.lastname@example.org
Twenty-one-month-old Josiah Dickens doesn’t know Mason Patton. His mom, Kayla Dickens doesn’t know Mason Patton. But on a recent Wednesday morning, the toddler and his mom felt some of the affection that represented Mason’s life.
Mason was 38 when he died on March 14, 2014. Diagnosed with kidney disease, Mason received his first kidney transplant five days before his 21st birthday. When that kidney – donated by his uncle Mike Patton – began to fail 10 years later, Mason began dialysis. Thirteen years after his first transplant he received a second transplant at IU Health University Hospital. Four years later, Mason’s body gave out.
His family – including his parents Mark and Denise Patton, and older sister Katina Curran – have made it their mission to keep Mason’s memory alive. They participate in the National Kidney Foundation events, an annual walk, Kidney Camp and fundraising gala. As “Team Mason” they work diligently to spread the word about kidney disease and make the lives of those battling the disease a little brighter.
Little Josiah, who is undergoing dialysis at Riley Hospital for Children, and his mom were recent recipients of that cheer. Mark and Denise Patton gave the family a gift card and also presented Josiah with a singing dog and a mini piano.
“These kids and the others who are suffering are the heroes,” said Denise Patton. “Team Mason is blessed to be able to help them and keep Mason’s love going.”