Thirteen and a half years ago in September of 1990, my husband, Dave Cole, received a kidney
and pancreas transplant after being on the list for only three weeks. The transplant was very successful and we were able
to continue to travel in our song ministry for the Lord as we did before. In February 2003, a virus attacked Dave’s
liver and also caused problems with the kidney and rejection started. He was sick most of the year and by November 2003, we
knew that another kidney transplant was in store if God did not heal the failing kidney.
We attend the Eastern Road Church of God in Rittman, Ohio where Dave’s brother, Faron Cole, is our pastor.
He wanted to be a donor for Dave but with his own health complications, he was unable to meet the requirements.
Then we had two members of our church that stepped forth and wanted to be tested to see if they matched.
Donor #1 – Elizabeth Pratt, age 20, a young lady that has been traveling with us in our ministry. She
runs our sound system and helps me drive our motor home on long distance trips. We have watched Elizabeth grow up from a teenager
and also grow in her spiritual walk with the Lord.
Donor #2 – Teresa (Knippenberg) Brenn, age 39, is a young lady that we just met in August 2002. She
was a medical assistant that was assisting in one of Dave’s surgeries. We had never met Teresa until that day. Since
Dave has been on immune suppressant medication, he has had multiple skin cancers that are ongoing and have to be surgically
removed. Teresa overheard us talking before Dave’s surgery about the Eastern Road Church of God in Rittman that Dave’s
brother might be pastoring in the near future. She was interested because she lived in Rittman. She wanted us to let her know
if and when that even was to take place.
Faron Cole became pastor of the Eastern Road Church of God in September 2002, but we did not remember the
medical assistant’s name at that time to let her know.
In December 2002, Dave had to have surgery again to remove another skin cancer and we told Teresa that we
were attending the church in Rittman and she was excited. Teresa told us that she liked country music. Since we sing southern
gospel with a country style, we did not want to pass up an opportunity to witness to her, so, we gave her a couple of our
CD’s. Teresa came to our Christmas evening service and said that she would be back. The following Sunday, during morning
worship service, Teresa gave her heart to the Lord. Then the next Sunday, her twin sister, Lesa, also received the Lord as
her personal Savior. They have been part of our church family ever since Christmas of 2002.
We have watched Teresa grow in the Lord and through the many trials and tragedies that she has faced in the
past year and a half, we have had the privilege to help her conquer each and every one through leaning on Jesus Christ through
a lot of prayer and scriptures.