Family reunion celebrates the gift of life

June 21, 2011 9:12:33 PM PDT
On Tuesday night, several generations of the Carnuccio family, originally from South Philadelphia, had many reasons to celebrate.

This is their 12th annual reunion where relatives travel from all over.

Tomorrow, Joseph Carnuccio will save the life of his brother Frank by giving him a kidney.

"I couldn't sit back and know I'm healthy, I'm able to give a kidney," Joseph said.

Frank couldn't find a match in his family.

So his brother Joseph entered a program through Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and volunteered to donate his kidney to a stranger.

In return, Frank received a kidney from an anonymous donor earlier this month and is recovering at home.

"It's a good deal, my brother gets a kidney, it saves his life; I donate a kidney and save someone else's life. How great is that?" Joseph said.

This was Frank's second time getting a kidney.

17 years ago, his other brother Larry gave him the vital organ. Talk about brotherly love.

"It was a little uneasy feeling, but I never waiver in my commitment to do it; I was happy to do it," Larry said.

Joseph says his donation tomorrow is what family is all about.

"With my family and the love and Jesus Christ leading the way, I can't ask for anything more," Joseph said.

Joseph who lives in California will report to the hospital early Wednesday morning for his surgery. Recovery will take a few weeks so he won't be able to travel back home for another month.