Thank You! to Donate Life Tennessee for Their Excellent Work Helping Coordinate the Second Gift of Life!

The "Before" Picture May '09
The “Before” Picture May ’09
13.1 Miles Later: Chuck Wins the Princess
13.1 Miles Later: Chuck Wins the Princess

“On 11/11/09 Steve Baum received the Gift of Life in a liver and kidney transplant. Before the gift, Steve struggled with day to day activities and shared this profile with his pregnant daughter. Since that day, he honors his gift and donor family by living life to the fullest. Steve is an active blogger and signs all his communications by encouraging everyone to register to be an organ and tissue donor. Hop on the ‪#‎Transformation‬ Tuesday bandwagon and transform your friends into registered donors! ”

The American Living Donor Fund

share the news — Financial Assists for Living Organ Donors

Sigrid Fry-Revere

November 27, 2014 9:46 AM

Hi Steve,

There is a new charity that helps living organ donors, regardless of race, creed, or financial status, meet their non-medical expenses while recovering from surgery.

The American Living Organ Donor Fund is a project of the Center for Ethical Solutions, a 501(c)(3) public charity. CES has had non-profit status for six years and is a recognized GuideStar charity.

We are here to help all kinds of living organ donors — kidney, liver, bone marrow, lung, intestine, pancreas. We prefer applications for aid be filed before the transplant takes place, but will accept applications for up to two months post transplant.

The application can be found here:

Sigrid Fry-Revere, J.D., Ph.D.
TEDMED Speaker, 2014
Co-Founder, American Living Organ Donor Fund

Thanksgiving 2014

Five years ago on 11/11/09 I received the Gift of Life in a liver and kidney transplant. We have never met my donor’s family and have not yet received a response to earlier letters. This year, on the fifth anniversary of their loved one’s passing, we hope they may be ready. Here is what I sent to them through the Organ Center:

Good morning,

We hope this letter reaches you and your family in good health and a blessed holiday season!

We have a life connection: your family and mine. One that caused your family the greatest hurt but gave my family and me the greatest hope. It happened five years ago…

I was dying. One of those long, slow chronic illnesses that runs in families and ours goes for the kidneys first and starts crushing them with cysts from the outside before choking them off from the inside. In my case the liver was predisposed for this, too, and it began to grow, covered with cysts the size of oranges, then softballs, and then grapefruits. In time it was going to cut off all those things the body needs to stay alive: eating, swallowing, breathing. And there was only one way to stop it…it had to be replaced.

Your son, brother, husband, father was in a horrible accident on that November day and there was nothing the doctors could do. You made the decision to try to save lives, and his liver and a kidney were given to me.

We don’t know the details and don’t need to but, with your permission, I’d like to know your loved one’s, my donor’s, name. We would like to meet you. And I wish I could tell him, and you, everything that has happened as a result of your generosity and sacrifice.

I could tell you that receiving that gift of life allowed me to live with my loved ones in a way we thought might not be possible. It allowed me to get up and get out and be a husband, a father, a grandfather longer than we had hoped.

There isn’t enough space to share all the things I’ve tried to do to show my thanks, make it right, and pay it forward. Just know that my wife and I hope our efforts and speeches, walks and donor sign-up tables, and even sports successes and personal testimony may help to make some other families know hope and receive the gift of life, too.

But nothing that I can do, until the end, can match both the sorrow you have felt and the generosity you have shown to saves the lives, like mine, that were running out of time but never hope or faith.

My family and I wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving and want you to know we think about you, and say thanks to you too, at every Thanksgiving we can share together now.

Thank you and God bless you.

To register to be an organ donor go to or register where you receive or renew your driver’s license. Remember you must renew your organ donor registration each time you renew your license.

April is National Donate Life Month

April is National Donate Life Month. Are you registered to be an organ donor? This liver and kidney transplant recipient is very grateful a young man in Alabama did so over 4 1/2 years ago! Go to

Enjoy True Transplant Tales on this blog: Scroll down to “The Life and Times of Chuck Basement” and then click the link at right: “The Games”

Saint Thomas Health considers liver transplant program:

And here's where you can register:

 Oct. 19, 2013    |
Written by Tom Wilemon The Tennessean
The Methodist University Hospital Transplant Institute, headed by Dr. James D. Eason, has formed an alliance with Saint Thomas Health. University of Tennessee surgeons with the Memphis-based institute began performing kidney transplants for Saint Thomas on July 1.

Rebecca Climer, chief marketing officer for Saint Thomas, said it is evaluating an expansion of the liver transplant program. Eason said that’s his goal.

“We certainly plan on being a full-service abdominal transplant program at Saint Thomas in Nashville,” Eason said.

The alliance gives the Memphis-based institute greater access to organ donations and Saint Thomas a higher profile in transplant surgery. Saint Thomas, which performed the state’s first heart transplant in March 1985, stopped doing those surgeries almost two years ago. Liver transplants would be a new specialty.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center is currently the only Middle Tennessee hospital that does liver or heart transplants.

Steve Baum of Franklin, a volunteer advocate for organ donation and people with liver disease, said he welcomed any development that gives patients more options.

“Anything that would add to the ability of extremely sick and dying people to get an organ transplant more quickly, I would certainly be in favor of,” Baum said.

After being diagnosed with polycystic liver and kidney diseases, he received a liver and kidney transplant four years ago at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, which his doctor recommended because surgeons there specialized in his massively enlarged condition and because it had short wait times for organs.

He advises anyone needing an organ transplant to explore all options, including getting on the list at more than one transplant center, especially if they are served by different organ procurement organizations.


Sign up to be an organ donor when renewing your driver’s license and make sure there’s a red heart near your photo. You must sign up every time you renew. Go online to or call 877-552-5050.

Liver transplants in Tennessee

» 203 people in Tennessee who are waiting for a liver.
» 172 livers that have been donated in Tennessee so far this year.
» 265 were donated in 2012.

Source: Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network

Register To Be An Organ Donor, Walk With Us, Or Just Come Hang Out…

Unite to Fight





And also:      Nashville Liver Life Walk

Good morning!

Join my lovely bride Anne and I as we represent Donate Life registering new organ donors at two locations in the coming week (or so):

Sat 9/21 @ Walk for PKD, River Park Brentwood, 8:30-10:30. I’ll also MC their pre-walk ceremony.

Sat 9/28 @ Liver Life Walk, Steeplechase area @ Warner Parks, 8:30-11.

Both will have music, food, activities for children, special auctions items (including Titans tix and signed stuff @ PKD 9/21) You know how important this is to our family and may some day affect your’s!

Y’all come!

Well…here we go again!

end-of-the-5k-and-its-funny-finishWhen Chuck and I were both small we loved competition but knew our limits: we were lousy runners. Slow. Bad. And it hurt.
After it was confirmed we had PKD we went through the long, slow chronic illness process: Long. Slow. Bad. And it hurt.
With the support of family and people like you we made it to the blessed day…
On 11-11-09 the second gift of life came in the form of a liver and kidney transplant.
We have been doubly blessed as our recovery has allowed us to participate and compete in some sports and sometimes even win a medal.
So these “old farts with new parts”, flat feet and all, are going to complete the Nashville Marathon by jogging, walking, and anything else it might take.
You can read about our story below here if you wish:

To make a donation go to:

Thank you for supporting PKD Foundation. Your contribution is greatly appreciated. – mo

Hi Neighbor! Come on in!

Hi Neighbor! Come on in!.

Check out some old memories from Bear Creek HS vocal music, musicals, and Sounds of BC. Then send your own photos and memories through the contact portal.

Special thanks to Janne (Lawson) Nielson for all her work so far!

Want to listen to a Sounds/Jazz Band concert from spring ’72?

Just click “By Request” here on this site…

Invitations to be sure:

Several friends, like Jay Preston Swafford and Ed Campbell and I, received our invitations to the National Seniors Games in July as official qualifiers. But for me the dates conflict with a World event just a little closer to my heart. And new liver. And new kidney:


World Transplant Games
World Transplant Games
Durban,. South AfricaJuly 28, 2013
Durban,. South Africa
July 28, 2013

Stay tuned for further developments!

So today is January 1…

Reading so many wonderful New Year’s notes it occurred to me that the calendar year is no longer how I mark my time.

Our wedding anniversary is preceded annually by the anniversary of my life-saving transplants. In between we finally get through the shortest day of the year which is always a celebration because I love longer days and shorter nights.

I don’t mind counting birthdays because I wasn’t sure at one time how many I would see. My family’s birthdays are even bigger celebrations. The first day of school is huge in a family of teachers.

So New Year’s is special simply because so many people get together and lay out and share their hopes for the future. Which four digits are assigned to this link in life are really rather immaterial except for accounting purposes. Every new day can be your best day.

So come together and share with the people who are most important to you. Today is just a great excuse to start!

Wow! Thank you to all who voted. There are a lot of inspiring stories at the Senior Olympics. I’m humbled that so many of you chose mine!

Walk at River Park in Brentwood to benefit Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation
Steve Baum

Steve Baum

Written by
Vicky Travis
The Tennessean

BRENTWOOD — A walk in the park Saturday is set to raise research dollars for a little-known health disorder, Polycystic Kidney Disease.

The PKD Foundation Walk begins at 9:30 a.m. with registration at 8:30 a.m. at River Park on Knox Valley Drive in Brentwood.

A grateful Steve Baum will be there, after having life-saving kidney and liver transplants in 2009 after his PKD had progressed for years.

“For organ recipients, it’s the generosity of the donor, the grace of God and great doctors,” he said.

The disease, which can be hidden under heart failure or diabetes, is genetic and usually creeps up over time. Symptoms usually develop between the ages of 30 and 40 but can begin earlier. PKD causes cysts to develop in internal organs, primarily the kidneys. The cysts will eventually choke off kidney function, making dialysis necessary. There is no cure. The disease affects more than 600,000 Americans.

Typically, the Brentwood PKD Walk raises about $45,000 or more, with many donations coming in after the walk. “The most special thing about the walk is the teams that form,” said Baum. Sometimes it’s coworkers supporting a patient or friends of a child diagnosed.

Founded in 1982, the PKD Foundation is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization with 61 chapters in the United States. To learn more, go to

Promoting the Senior Olympics and the Walk for PKD: thank you Bonnie Burch of the Tennessean!

Steve Baum took home a bronze medal in the power walk, silver in the triple jump and gold in the 10K in last month's Senior Olympic Games.

Steve Baum took home a bronze medal in the power walk, silver in the triple jump and gold in the 10K in last month’s Senior Olympic Games. / JEANNE REASONOVER / FILE / THE TENNESSEAN

Written by
Bonnie Burch
The Tennessean
Baum climbed to the top of Mount Evans in Colorado in June. / SUBMITTED

FRANKLIN — Steve Baum credits the Tennessee Senior Olympics for getting his activity level back on track after a double organ transplant in 2009.

Now, he has an opportunity to promote the nonprofit that encourages fitness and healthy lifestyles for those ages 50 and older through his participation in an online voting contest.

At 57, Baum of Franklin is one of 12 senior athletes profiled in the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee’s “Choose Your Champ” sweepstakes.

“We’re all happy to do it, although there’s nothing in it for us. It’s mostly to raise awareness for Senior Olympics,” said Baum.

On the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Facebook page, visitors can view video montages introducing each competitor. The senior athlete with the most “likes” wins the contest. Baum isn’t sure what the top prize is but thinks it might have something to do with a calendar.

Living life again

A longtime exercise enthusiast, Baum was very ill with Polycystic Kidney Disease for eight years. Then on Nov. 11, 2009, doctors removed his malfunctioning 30-pound liver and 9-pound kidney and transplanted healthy organs into his body.

“I’m the only man in America who lost almost 40 pounds in one day,” he kids.

Within six weeks, he was back at work. Within nine months, he was playing basketball in the U.S. Transplant Games. He also completed his first half-marathon. For the 2011 Tennessee Senior Olympic Games, Baum secured three bronze medals as a first-time competitor.

In last month’s statewide Senior Olympic Games held throughout Williamson County, Baum took home a bronze medal in the power walk, silver in the triple jump and gold in the 10K. The foot race win was a surprise because “I run like an ostrich with sore feet,” said Baum.

Baum is also a public speaker for various organ transplant and donor groups.

“It seems that everybody that has had a transplant wants to pay it forward and give back. It’s just a sense of mission to make sure other people get as lucky, too,” he said.

Vote Baum

To vote for Steve Baum and his video, search for BCBST on Facebook and “like” the page. There’s also a chance to win $500 in the process. Votes can be placed weekly through Aug. 31.
Walk for PKD starts at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 22 at River Park, off Concord Road in Brentwood (across from library). To donate or learn more, go

2012 TN Senior Olympics: You just never know what’s going to happen…

Anne and I were very surprised when I was nominated for Most Inspiring Athlete at the Tennessee Senior Olympics banquet during the state finals. What Blue Cross Blue Shield of TN has decided to do is a sweepstakes where those VOTING in the “Choose Your Champ” can win $500. All of a sudden there was a two-minute vignette featuring me chatting about my transplants and all I’d had to overcome to get there. Wow.

This year’s Senior Olympics was a challenge as I’d had to wear an elbow brace and doctor’s orders, along with Anne’s special brand of gentle persuasion, kept me out of cycling and my beloved basketball events. My team, the Time Benders, had won gold at Districts in the 55-59 3-on-3 and your’s truly earned a silver in Free Throw shooting although I “baumed” in Three Point as the elbow had begun to bother me. The next day I tore a tendon in that elbow during my first softball throw. Thank God it was before the shot put or who knows?

Still ended up with a bronze in the Powerwalk, silver in the Triple Jump and gold in the 10K. Special thanks to the two best distance runners in my age group that no-showed leaving a few of us mere mortals to slog out the 10K!

Always a pleasure to chat with and support the other senior athletes. You cultivate friendships and “The Games” is like a big family reunion for most. Many inspiring stories as not everyone was a natural athlete who had remained active throughout their lives. Many, like me, were just happy to be there. As I said in the :60 spot that will be used to promote future games it’s simply “In One Word? Joy!”

So then on to the “Choose Your Champ” sweepstakes:

Vote for Steve? I’m hoping you can help me:

 “I have been nominated by Blue Cross Blue Shield and the Tennessee Senior Olympics as one of their Most Inspirational Athletes in their “Choose Your Champ” sweepstakes.

Some background: I received the Second Gift of Life with a liver and kidney transplant 11/11/09 after being ill and physically inactive for over eight years. Literally dying. As a part of my paying it forward I sign new donors and to honor my own I participate in athletic events and speaking engagements.

Two half-marathons, a sprint triathlon, basketball in the Transplant Games and now, most recently, a Gold, Silver, and Bronze in track and field at the 2012 TN Senior Olympics show just how truly blessed my family and I have become.

Go to the Blue Cross Blue Shield of TN facebook page, “like” it, and vote for Steve Baum: the old fart with new parts on the bicycle. You could even win $500 for you or your organization! You can vote weekly!

 My family and I thank you for your consideration!”

So, as I walk into the registration area one of the young volunteers says “Look! It’s the guy in the poster!” Hmmm…didn’t see THAT comin’!

The TN Senior Olympics state finals are here…

Here’s a link to the :60 TV spot we shot to promote. Don’t blink or you might miss a familiar-looking cyclist:

And other media:–cms-9469

Forget London; Senior Olympics get under way Friday
Posted: Tuesday, July 10, 2012 10:53 pm
Forget London; Senior Olympics get under way Friday

2011 Tennessee Senior Olympics’ Cycling medalists in the 55-59 age group, Jay Swafford (silver), Greg Clark (gold) and Steve Baum (bronze)

Almost 2000 athletes will compete right here

Brentwood Home Page
Williamson County is getting a head start on the Olympic Games 2012 by hosting the Tennessee Senior Olympics, which kick off Friday and run through Thursday, July 19. This year’s number of registered athletes is record-breaking, surpassing 1,962 athletes in all. All participants live in Tennessee and are at least 50 years in age.

Williamson County Parks and Recreation athletics department, Battleground Academy and sponsors BlueCross BlueShield and Walgreens are providing over 300 volunteers to facilitate the Games.

Brentwood will play an important role in the games, hosting a variety of the events which include swimming, track and field, horseshoes, table tennis, bowling, badminton, tennis, basketball, archery, racquetball, cycling, volleyball, softball, shuffleboard, golf, pickleball, 10K and 5K races, a fitness walk, and a one-mile power walk.

For the first time ever, the state games include a 50-meter dash heat in track. Approximately 100 participants signed up to take part in it.

Brentwood’s Indoor Sports Complex and the Maryland Farms YMCA will serve as competition venues. Other venues include Battle Ground Academy, Franklin Recreational Center, Franklin Entertainment Center, Fieldstone Farms, the Academy Park, the Ag Expo Center, College Grove Recreational Center, Christ Church at Arrington, and Pine Creek Golf Course.

The Tennessee Senior Olympics strives to “promote a healthy lifestyle among seniors through fitness, sports, and an active involvement in life.” TSO’s Executive Director Christine Dewbre says watching the participants compete is “very inspirational.”

One example of such inspiration is Williamson County’s very own Steve Baum. Baum, 57, battled liver and kidney disease for eight years until he received a transplant for both organs in November 2009. Until his surgery, everyday tasks like walking half a mile were unbearable.

After the two transplants, Baum faced a couple significant challenges: rebuilding his deteriorated muscles and learning to combat his obstructed breathing caused by the 21-inch scar across his stomach. Instead of focusing on his past obstacles, however, Baum set his sights on the future with the goal of playing basketball at the 2010 Transplant Games. He met that goal a mere nine months after his surgery.

Last year was Baum’s first year to participate in the Tennessee Senior Olympics. He entered in three open events and brought home bronze medals in each. This year, he signed up for a grand total of 10 events, but a recent injury to his right elbow, however, will limit his ability to compete in all of them.

When asked what the Tennessee Senior Olympics means to him, Baum summed it up in one word: joy.

“I’ve gone from dying to winning a bronze in the triple jump. It’s just pure joy.”

For more information, download the “2012 State Finals Athlete Program” at