A Feel-Good Story with a Jolt

By Christine Cupaiuolo — March 4, 2008

I’m not one to get sappy over Starbucks, but this story about a 51-year-old barista who is donating one of her kidneys to a customer with polycystic kidney disease is too good to pass up.

Sandie Andersen took the job more than four years ago for the health benefits, which her husband’s job does not provide. Now she’ll share her health with Annamarie Ausnes, 55, a university administrative assistant who started coming in for a daily pick-me-up about three years ago. The women bonded by way of over-the-counter conversation, and that’s how Andersen learned Ausnes needed a transplant and no one in her family was match.

The surgery is scheduled for March 11.

“I asked my surgeon, ‘Will I be able to snowboard afterward?'” said Andersen. “He said, ‘Do you snowboard now?’ I said, ‘No, but I’m hoping to.'”

Here’s a toast to them both.

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