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Personal Trainer Makes Public Appeal For Live Kidney Donor

A local trainer devoted to keeping others healthy is turning to the public for help.

Natalie Russo recently posted an emotional, three minute video on social media.

The 32-year-old is a personal trainer at the SWELL Santa Barbara Athletic Club on Cathedral Oaks Rd. but had to cut back to part time after suffering kidney failure in February of last year.

Russo told NewsChannel 3 she’s has been in and out of the hospital since the middle of 2014, endured blood clots, internal bleeding and is now on UCLA’s registry for a kidney transplant while undergoing home dialysis.

Russo said the wait for a transplant is long — five to eight years — and has turned to the public in hopes of finding a live donor.

“It’s a huge gift and something I won’t take for granted,” Russo said in her video posted on Facebook. “You’ll give me a second chance to start a family with my wonderful fiance.”

Russo links her kidney failure to strep throat as a child.

She is hopeful UCLA’s live donor registry will find a match. If you’re interested, go to the following link here.

A fund has been set up to help Russo with her medical bills.

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