Arizona man, ASU alum needs a kidney transplant: 'He's very deserving'

An Arizona man is relying on dialysis to keep him alive, and his parents are launching a campaign to try to get their son a new kidney.

At home, so much feels normal for Austin Shields. But, as the days go on, dialysis is starting to take its toll.

"I have a hard time walking up stairs, driving, walking long distances, that kind of thing, which is an adjustment," Austin said.

An autoimmune disease started leaving its mark on his kidneys.

"Overtime they build up with scar tissue and become ineffective over the years," he said.

So, a kidney is a necessity for the 27-year-old who went to ASU and later earned a master's at Penn State.

His dad and mom moved to Arizona to help care for him.

"It's extremely difficult and stressful," his dad, John Shields, said.

Typically, he's active and outdoorsy, but not when he has to spend time inside.

"It was a whole lifestyle adjustment," Austin said.

Austin is just one of the tens of thousands in our country that need a kidney transplant. No one in his family qualifies to donate.

So they're hoping someone out there, maybe watching or reading this story, will.

"He's very deserving of the gift of life," John said.

Austin says he's inspired and hopeful by the response he's gotten.

"Handing out business cards with the website on them, bumper stickers, word of mouth with friends. We've been really happy with the results so far. We have people I don't know on the other side of the country getting tested to see if they can donate," Austin said.

The website,, tells his story and his needs. So far, no matches, but he remains hopeful.

"The fact there are people out there that could do something so big for a stranger they dont even know. It's hard to put into words how that makes you feel. It makes you feel like there's a future for this world. I can't tell you how happy that makes me," Austin said.

Click here to learn more about Austin's story and how you might be able to help.