Bob Watson says he’s at peace with the fact that he’s dying.
As the New York Daily News reports, the 71-year-old ex-baseball player has battled a number of health problems in recent years and is now experiencing kidney failure. Watson, who also served as the General Manager of the New York Yankees and an executive with Major League Baseball, was once known as “The Bull,” a tall, strong bruiser of a player.
Now, Watson must go through four hours of dialysis three times a week. A transplant would save his life, but when Watson’s children offered to donate a kidney to their father, he refused. As Watson told the Daily News:
“Both my kids offered to donate kidneys to me and I told them both the same thing: ‘I’ve had a good life and I don’t want to take a kidney from young people who really need them and still have their whole lives ahead of them.’ That would be very selfish on my part.”
Watson says he’s satisfied with the life he has lived and that he’s “ready for whatever happens now” — a feeling he told the Daily News is reinforced when he considers the friends that have gone before him:
“I look around and see where we just lost Oscar [Gamble] and he was only 68, and in 2009 [former Houston Astro] Dave Roberts, my old roomie in Houston, died and he was just 64. So I’ve had a good count and like I said, I’ve got no complaints. I’ve lived a real good life.”
While Watson might be content seeing his situation, not everyone agrees with his decision to turn down a donor kidney from his children. On Facebook, commenters argued over whether the father’s sacrifice is misplaced.
Several people said that accepting your child’s kidney isn’t as selfish as rejecting it and denying them the chance to spend more time with you.Screenshot/Facebook Screenshot/Facebook
Others worried that it might send the wrong message to potential donors to imply that living with only one kidney was risky.Screenshot/Facebook
But there were also those who defended Watson’s decision, pointing out that it was a choice only he could make, and that he might be thinking about the long-term health of his children and grandchildren.Screenshot/Facebook Screenshot/Facebook
As for Watson himself, he’s content to go on with dialysis for as long as it helps. He says his only regret is that dialysis has prevented him from going to a few events, like the anniversary of the Yankee’s 1996 World Championship:
“Ten months ago, the doctors told me I could have two years or 12. Well now I’ve gotten to the point where every day I’m still here is a blessing.”