After arriving at the beach and setting up their campervan, the couple took to the shoreline with their two hounds. However, as they settled in next to a barbecue, Indie started to repeatedly wander over to a woman in the distance.
Speaking to the BBC, Lucy said: “Indie kept going over to this woman about 100 yards away. She kept going back and forward to her and we kept calling her back because obviously, a big Doberman can be a little bit intimidating.
“We thought she had food or something and Cenydd kept calling her back. In the end, we went over to apologise to her.”
The woman they went over to apologise to was Katie James, 40, from Barry. After a brief conversation, Katie was invited to join them at their barbecue, where all of their lives changed.
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While getting to know each other, the pair made an astonishing discovery. Lucy said: “Cenydd explained that I couldn’t drink as I was on dialysis. [Katie] was like ‘Oh what’s that for’, and he said she’s waiting for a kidney transplant.”
Katie then explained to Lucy and Cenydd that she had just put herself on the kidney donation register.
When Katie was asked who she would give it to, Lucy said she simply responded: “Anyone who wants it.” Following the conversation, the pair swapped numbers and contacted the donor coordinator the next day.
The tests revealed that, amazingly, Katie’s kidney was a perfect match for Lucy. Doctors reportedly told them there was a one in 22 million chance of Katie’s kidney being a match.
While the transplant could go ahead, the operation date kept being pushed back due to Covid-19.
To stay in contact, Lucy set up a WhatsApp group known as The Kidney Gang and despite the delays, Cenydd said she couldn’t wait to get her life back after being restricted in what she could eat and drink due to the dialysis.
Cenydd said: “All her visits to the hospital she was updating us and sending recorded messages and pictures. I’ve still got all the recordings and how excited she was that she was doing something good. It’s just mad a total stranger and Lucy’s got her life back. [sic]
“For the last five years, she couldn’t drink anything and she was restricted on what she could eat. Now, she can eat and drink what she likes and we’re starting to get our life back to normal.”
As well as Lucy, the whole experience has been emotional for Katie too.
Katie said: “I feel really lucky that I got know Lucy, I know that it’s worked and I know that she’s out there living her life. To me, there’s been no negative to it whatsoever.
“I feel really proud of myself, I get embarrassed sometimes though as every time I’m out with my nan she will tell a stranger ‘Oh my granddaughter donated a kidney.’ It’s the best thing I’ve ever done and I feel so proud of myself and my family is proud of me.”
The other hero of the story, Indie hasn’t been forgotten either. Lucy credits her beloved hound for choosing Katie.
Although Lucy has now got her life with Cenydd and her dogs back, the quintet continue to meet up nearly two years on from the fateful day on that Welsh beach.