Stevens Point man honored after donating kidney, raising awareness

By Sean White and Alicia Schumacher

STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) - Mark Scotch became a kidney donor in 2020 after meeting Hugh Smith from Natchitoches, Louisianna who was on dialysis.

Scotch, 67, is being recognized for his efforts in raising awareness for kidney donations. Mark received an award from Stevens Point Mayor Mike Wiza and a legislative citation from Senator Patrick Testin and Rep. Katrina Shankland.

He donated his kidney to Smith and decided to raise awareness by biking across the country on the route his donated kidney took. His wife Lynn also donated her kidney last month.

As for what’s next for him, Mark said, “The next ride is to finish the route of Hugh’s kidney from southern California to Louisiana. So we are going to start in Lubbock to finish the second half. Lubbock, Texas to New Orleans.” He said the goal of it all is to spread awareness to as many people as possible and to inspire more donations.

Scotch has made previous “Organ Trail” bike journeys while highlighting kidney health, including 1,500 miles from Madison to Natchitoches, 1,350 miles from San Diego to Lubbock, and 1,600 miles from Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts to his home in Plover.

Due to his many activities on behalf of more than 100,000 people awaiting kidney transplants, Mark earned the 2021 USA Today “Humankind Triumph of the Year Award.”