A Texas inmate on death row wants to delay his execution so he can donate a kidney

·2 min read
kidney transplant 2
Stock image: Doctors performing a kidney transplant.BSIP/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
  • A Texan man on death row is asking for an extra month before execution so he can donate a kidney.

  • His rare "B" blood type makes the donation extra valuable in saving life, his lawyers argued.

  • One chaplain said he wants to "give life before his life is taken."

A Texan prisoner on death row requested a delay to his execution so that he can donate a kidney before his death, according to multiple reports.

In 2006, Ramiro Gonzalez was found guilty of shooting Bridget Townsend, an 18-year-old who had disappeared five years earlier, as the Associated Press reported at the time.

He was sentenced to death by lethal injection, the AP reported, and has spent more than a decade and a half in prison.

Gonzalez' execution is currently set for July 15, according to the Texas Tribune. On June 29, his lawyers wrote to Governor Greg Abbott asking for a 30-day reprieve in order to find a recipient for one of Gonzalez' kidneys.

Attached to the request was a letter from Cantor Michael Zoosman, a Jewish chaplain and a founder of an anti-capital punishment organization, who said that he has been in correspondence with Gonzalez for more than a year.

Saying that Gonzalez is a person of profound Christian faith, he wrote: "He has expressed sincere repentance for the life he took and has spoken with me with great interest of Jewish ideas about repentance and forgiveness."

The idea to donate a kidney came up when a member of Zoosman's congregation tried and failed to find a donor, Zoosman wrote. Gonzalez "immediately" wanted to be the donor, Zoosman wrote.

"In his letters to me, he expressed his desire to be able to give life before his life is taken," he wrote.

After tests, Gonzalez was found to be a mismatch for Zoosman's recipient, his lawyers wrote. Instead, he wants to find someone else to receive the organ.

His rare "B" blood type makes him even more likely to save someone's life with the donation, they argued.

Zoosman said that he did not believe Gonzalez was trying to "escape the executioner's sword" by delaying his death.

"I will go to my grave believing in my heart that this is something that Ramiro wants to do to help make his soul right with his G-d." (Some Jewish people omit the middle letter when writing "God".)

Read the original article on Insider