About Ray

I live with my wife in Byram Township, New Jersey.  We have three adult children.  I am a video producer and editor (Ray Mueller Productions) serving the needs of non-profit organizations.  I was born outside Chicago, grew up in Minneapolis, went to college in Seward, NB, worked in Busby, MT and New York City, and moved to Jersey City, prior to settling here in Sussex County.

On April 3, 2012, at the age of 59, through the National Kidney Registry, I donated my left kidney to someone who had a donor who didn’t match them.  Their donor was willing to “pay it forward,” giving their kidney to someone else in the chain who also had such a donor, and so on.  As a result, four transplants took place on that day.

If you are a healthy adult and can take the time off work or are retired, I encourage you to consider such a donation yourself.  I hope that this record of the process I’ve gone through might be helpful to you.

To start at the beginning of my story, go through the blogs according to their date, beginning with the first blog March 1, 2012.

If you have questions, feel free to contact me directly at ray.mueller@verizon.net.

5 Responses to About Ray

  1. Ray,

    Wonderful blog on becoming a living donor!!! I have a blog as well at simplycara.blogspot.com
    and the more we spread the word and what the journey is like hopefully more people will step forward and donate. Most importantly it helps educate those needing a kidney to understand how kidney pairings non-designated donors can do!! Thank you so much!

    Cara Yesawich

  2. Hollie Hastings says:

    I just wanted to thank you for being an Angel. I am on the transplant list in Dallas,TX, and wanted to thank you for giving someone like me hope. May God Bless you, and your family!

  3. Hello Ray, I was wondering if you would give me a clear perspective on this: I donated my kidney to my brother back in 2000. he still has it and is in relatively good health. My family, including him basically told me to move on and get over it. It was a gift and like it says in the bible relating to charitable giving, “do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing”. Well, it changed my life as I was not able to have a family of my own due to the fact that I am very petite. I lived with resentment and anger at his lack of appreciation. Just a little over a year after the operation, I was diagnosed with the highest grade of ovarian cancer! I know it was partly due to my pent up hurt. I survived the cancer. Yay. Well, to make a long story short, I never mention the fact that I was a donor, for fear that I am “bragging”. What is the etiquette for that? I am in the process of making a new website and thought I might mention it in my husband’s and my bio section. I think it could inspire others to also donate like you are doing, also it is part of the history of why we started our organization, but I don’t know since like I mentioned, I am pretty messed up in the head or confused to say the least. Merci for any input.

    • Ray Mueller says:

      That’s great that you were able to do that for your brother! Some recipients are less expressive of their appreciation than others, for whatever reason. My recipient has not contacted me, but that is okay as the donation was “no strings attached.” Your acknowledging your negative feelings about this helps in moving beyond them. Sorry to hear of the cancer but glad you survived it.

      Unless it somehow relates to a conversation, I also now don’t mention that I was a donor. But I do mention it in my business website with a link to this blog. It is a part of your story, like mine, and as you say, it may encourage others to consider donation. I think it would be good to mention your donation on your website in the place you mentioned. That’s where people go to get your story. If you are so inclined, you could invite anyone interested in kidney donation to contact you, or create a link to where you write more about it.

      All the best to you, your husband, and the wonderful work that you do with your foster kids.

  4. Thank you very much for your encouraging and kind words. All the best to you Ray.

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