Raffle to benefit man in need of kidney transplant - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Raffle to benefit man in need of kidney transplant

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A local mechanic rebuilt a car that was no longer running and is now giving it away to raise money for a friend.

John Smart owns Car Automotive in Billings and has spent the last several months rebuilding a car that had seen better days.

"It's a '97 Saturn SE 1," Smart said. "It's a car. It's been gone through from one end to the other."

Now that his restoration of the vehicle is complete, Smart decided to give it away in an effort to help his dear friend, Dan Landon.

"If you ever needed someone to come up and get you out of trouble in the middle of the night, Dan would be the guy," Smart said.

Smart and Landon have been friends for more than 35 years. Landon is a Montana Native and a former volunteer firefighter for the Shepherd Fire Department. He also served in the military in a construction battalion for the U.S. Navy in Vietnam.

"In Vietnam, agent orange was something they sprayed to defoliate an area to kill all the plants in that area," Smart said. "He got repeated exposures to agent orange, which has given him a whole variety of physical problems that he's spent a lot of time dealing with."

Now, Landon needs a kidney transplant and is seeking a kidney donor.

"Anything I can do to help him, I will," Smart said.

"I think that is above and beyond the call of duty," Landon said. "He is very, very generous to me."

Now that smart has rebuilt the car, you can purchase raffle tickets for 5 dollars a piece or 5 for 20 to win it. All of the proceeds will be going towards Dan Landon's kidney transplant fund.

Landon moved to Minnesota to have a better chance at receiving a new kidney. Smart said since he can't donate his kidney to Landon, raising money during his time of need is the next best thing.

Dan Landon's total expenses are estimated at about $99,000 dollars. If you'd like to purchase raffle tickets at your chance to win the Saturn, you can stop by Car Automotive in Billings. If you'd like to donate money for Dan Landon, a gifting account is set up in Dan's name. Donations can be made directly to First Interstate Bank, label the memo line 'Gift'.

If you would like to see if you are a perfect kidney match for Landon, you can contact Melissa at Unity Point Iowa Methodist Medical Center at (515) 241-4174 in Des Moines, where Dan is listed for a transplant.

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