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NJ Woman Celebrates 20 Year Anniversary of Her Kidney Donation to Save Her Mother’s Life




By: Richard L. Smith 

Twenty years ago, Rosemarie Hampp, 58, donated one of her kidneys to save her mother’s life. Today, Rosemarie is forever thankful for that decision. She is now on a personal mission to support N.J. Sharing Network, the nonprofit organization responsible for recovering and placing donated organs and tissue in the Garden State. 

“My goal is to save and enhance more lives because there are nearly 4,000 people in New Jersey waiting for a life-saving transplant,” said Rosemarie.

“I believe that everyone should consider being a living organ donor or simply register as an organ and tissue donor to make a positive difference in the lives of others after your time on Earth is done.”

Rosemarie’s fundraising efforts to support the Sharing Network Foundation have been powered by many of her family members and friends participating in the 5K Celebration of Life on May 20in Ocean Grove.

“Team Rosie,” named in honor of Rosemarie’s mother (Rose Marie Hampp), was established earlier this year to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Rosemarie’s life-saving gift.

“My mom lived a healthy and happy life until she was diagnosed with primary amyloidosis,” said Rosemarie. “Her health issues worsened progressively, and dialysis treatments were never easy.”

Once Rosemarie learned about the possibility of being a living kidney donor for her mother, she was eager to move forward, hoping to give her mother the gift of life. However, her parents did not want her to donate her kidney.

“Even though I knew they were against it, I secretly got tested for transplant compatibility,” said Rosemarie. “When the results showed that I was a great match, I was a nervous wreck because I was not sure how I was going to tell them about it.”


Although Rosemarie’s mother was hesitant at first, she finally agreed. The successful kidney transplant was completed by the medical team at Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center on December 17, 2003. Rosemarie’s gift gave her mother several additional years to enjoy life’s precious moments.

“We named my donated kidney ‘Fred,’ and we called my remaining kidney ‘Ginger’ because they worked well together and individually,” said Rosemarie.

“My mom ultimately passed away in 2006 due to pancreatitis. It was unrelated to her transplant, and her kidney always worked perfectly.”

Rosemarie has also used her professional art skills to create colorful Donate Life stickers to raise additional funds and awareness. To support Rosemarie’s efforts, visit

According to United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), over 100,000 people in the U.S. are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant, and 17 people in the U.S. die each day waiting for an organ transplant. To learn more, get involved, and register as an organ and tissue donor, visit