(WYCD) — A single dad never expected that a family trip to Disney’s Magic Kingdom would change his life.
According to WFTV, New Jersey native Robert Leibowitz, 60, made a T-shirt with his daughter before a trip to Orlando as a way to help search for a kidney donor.
The white shirt reads: “In need of a kidney. O positive. Call 917-597-2651.”
Rocio Sandoval saw the shirt and asked if she could take a picture and post it on social media. He agreed and the image quickly went viral, being shared nearly 100,000 times.
WFTV reports several people with the correct blood type reached out, but few passed other requirements. That changed when Richie Sully, of Indiana, began looking into being the donor.
Sully spent 14 hours on a bus and stayed in a hostel so he could be tested, and when the results came back, he turned out to be a perfect match.
“I think that I am still in shock, just the fact that it is real,” Leibowitz told WFTV.
He said he has been battling kidney issues since he was 12 years old and hopes the transplant will give him more time with his children.
“I am a single dad. I love them more than anything in the world and they are my rocket fuel. That’s what keeps me going,” Leibowitz told WFTV.
Sully said he related to Leibowitz’s story as a father.
“Fortunately, I am fairly healthy and I saw this as just another way to help someone…it just happens to require surgery,” Sully said.
Sandoval said she’s thrilled that her social media post could put the two men together, calling the match a “Christmas miracle.”
As for after the surgery? Sully and Leibowitz plan to go to Disney World together.
“That’s where the magic really happened,” he told People.