WAVELAND, MS (WLOX) - On September 21, Waveland Mayor Mike Smith was given the gift of life after waiting more than a year for a kidney transplant.
The angel he says saved him — his younger sister Melissa.
"It almost makes you want to tear up when you think about it, that she would do that," Mayor Smith said.
Mike and Melissa's mom suffered from kidney disease and went through dialysis treatment for nearly eight years before passing away.
"I took her all three days a week. Waited on her, went back and picked her up and saw where she was just so limpness but the end of each day," Melissa Hardie said.
Not wanting to see her brother suffer the same fate, Hardie stepped up, did her own research and got tested to find out if she was a match.
"She was tested and she matched. Perfect match, actually, which was special to me because she's always been special to me," Mayor Smith said.
Special enough to call his little sister his hero.
"I call her my hero now because that's my new lease on life and I feel incredible because of it," said Mayor Smith.
Mayor Smith may call his sister hero, but she says she did what she had to to see her brother live.
"I know he would have done it for me and I would do it again today. If they said, 'hey we forgot something', I wouldn't even hiccup. I would just go back and do it again," Hardie said.
Mayor Smith says he's taking his new life day by day, and encourages others to be the angel to someone in need, or at least take the first step and look into it.