ATLANTA — He didn't just lose his mother. Kincaid Eaker lost his second chance at life.
Kincaid was born with a genetic disorder called polycystic kidney disease, the same disease that claimed his older brothers as infants, but medical treatment saved his life. His mother, Audra Eaker, knew the time would come when her son would need a donated kidney, and she'd already told him she was ready.
But in December 2016, Audra was shot five times in the head by her husband, Darrell, as they drove along Highway 92 in Woodstock, Georgia.
“What am I gonna do?” Kincaid, then 10, said on the day of the funeral, according to his grandmother. “My mom was going to give me my kidney. What am I gonna do now?”
Nearly three years later, his mother’s best friend is on a mission to help find a donor for Kincaid and raise money to help the family with any expenses.
"This is how I can honor the best friend I ever had," Brandy Love told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Brandy and Audra met two decades ago. Their then-husbands worked together and traveled frequently. Kincaid arrived in October 2006, joining his sister Olivia, who the Eakers had adopted.
“She had him in the ambulance on the side of I-75 near Delk Road,” Love said.
Kincaid was born before his mother could make it to the hospital.
The two women raised their children together and photographs documented their yearly beach trips.
“I was supposed to end up in the rocking chair with her, not anyone else,” Love said.
Kincaid and his older sister, Olivia, are now active teenagers, living with grandparents just outside of Knoxville, Tennessee. The tragedy is behind them, but never forgotten, their grandmother Elaine Touton says. Touton is Audra’s mother.
Darrell Eaker, Kincaid’s father, was convicted of killing Audra in Cherokee County, Georgia, and sentenced to life in prison, plus 16 years, without the possibility of parole for the domestic violence.
“Considering everything they’ve lost, their mom and dad and their school, their friends and their house,” Touton says. “They’re thriving. And I’m so thankful.”
Kincaid’s kidney function has declined in recent weeks, Touton said. His doctor at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta has told the family the 13-year-old needs a transplant and he’s been placed on the list to receive a donor. Kincaid’s kidneys are currently functioning at only 14%. He is continuing to be treated by a doctor at Egleston.
Although he’s able to attend school, where he plays the saxophone in band, and swim laps with his team, Kincaid tires easily and must take medication frequently, his grandmother says. He doesn’t like to be the center of attention.
So far, no one has been a match for Kincaid. But his family believes it’s just a matter of time. Until then, the family is focused on moving forward and overcoming the unimaginable tragedy.
“God says he’s going to make beauty from ashes, and he already has,” Touton said. “I know the Lord is going to take care of everything. I just know he will.”
Help for Kincaid
A Go Fund Me page titled "Kincaid needs a kidney" has been created to assist Kincaid's family.
Emory University Hospital is conducting the search for a kidney. Here is the donor webpage.
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