PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Little Kennedy Stevenson has become great friends with Michael Thompson and his wife, Kierstan.

But the bond is far closer than a 3-year-old could ever imagine. Tuesday morning, Michael will donate part of his liver to save her life.

“She has a very very rare metabolic disease,” said her mother, Donya McCoy. “She is one of eight in the world diagnosed with the disease.”

Her daughter will be the first in the world to have this particular operation. It came about when the Lancaster County woman reached out on Facebook for a donor.

“And Mike, who I went to high school with, responded, and we started the testing process, and he turned out to be a match,” she said.

“Donya, I don’t think it didn’t really kick in until we started doing the steps,” Michael added.

“I think I asked him five or six times if he was serious, if that was a serious response,” Donya responded.

He was. At the same time as surgeons will be removing Kennedy’s liver at Children’s Hospital, doctors at Montefiore Hospital will be taking out up to 25 percent of the donor’s liver.

It will then be packaged up and whisked by ambulance across town for the transplant.

Kennedy’s mom expects all to go well.

“They think this is going to cure her,” she said. “And if it does, it gives me so much comfort that maybe another mom doesn’t have to walk the same path that I did. They’ll figure things out sooner, and know how to intervene and do a transplant, and life goes on.”

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