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Former Shark Tank Contestant and Rockland Resident Faces Unforeseen Challenges After Kidney Donation

Former Shark Tank Contestant and Rockland Resident Faces Unforeseen Challenges After Kidney Donation

Kevin Kiernan, a well-known native of Rockland County, NY and Bergen County, NJ, as well as a former Shark Tank contestant, is courageously navigating unexpected health and financial hurdles after his selfless kidney donation earlier this year. In a remarkable display of altruism, Kiernan’s act of kindness has led to a complex journey marked by unforeseen complications and a community rallying together to support him and his family.

In January 2023, Kevin Kiernan made the decision to donate a kidney to a friend of a Villanova University alumnus. Reflecting on his choice, Kiernan states, “I decided to do the kidney transplant, and that’s how this journey started.” Kiernan’s “Kenndoo” attitude has been a guiding principle throughout his life. However, the path that unfolded after his noble gesture took an unexpected turn.

Kiernan’s recovery from the kidney donation proved to be far more challenging than anticipated. He encountered a series of post-surgical health complications, including hernia surgery, hematoma surgery, and issues stemming from a medical mesh implant. These unanticipated complexities triggered a cascade of additional medical procedures, testing both Kiernan’s physical and emotional well-being.

Adding to the adversity, Kiernan received an email in April from NYU Langone Transplant Center, notifying him that his medical expenses would no longer be covered by the institution. The decision was based on their evaluation that his symptoms were not linked to the organ donation process. Responding to this, Kiernan expressed, “Now that’s just silly and ridiculous.” As a result, he is now burdened with substantial medical bills, compounded by his lack of insurance coverage. Moreover, these medical setbacks have left him unable to work and provide for his family, dramatically impacting his life and financial stability. “I’m in the one percent,” he laments. “I lost everything in this surgery.”

Kevin and his three children

Further compounding the situation, the doctor who had been guiding Kiernan’s recovery unexpectedly departed NYU Langone Transplant Center, leaving him without the support and guidance he so critically needed during this pivotal time. The abruptness of the transition added another layer of challenge to his recovery process.

Faced with immediate financial needs, Kiernan’s son, Zachary, has issued a heartfelt call to action, seeking support to aid his father’s recovery. “We need immediate help for my father’s lingering medical effects from the surgery,” Zachary Kiernan expressed. “We thought at most a three-day hospital stay and a few weeks at home; boy, were we wrong.”

In response to this plea for assistance, a GoFundMe campaign has been launched by Zachary Kiernan, with a goal of $20,000. The campaign ( aims to alleviate the financial strain on the Kiernan family, with sources including Kiernan’s alma mater, Villanova University Community, joining efforts to spread the word and offer support to this beloved figure. After an arduous eight-month battle, the Kiernan family remains hopeful for a bright and healthy future. Their resilience and determination, coupled with the support and love of their community, provide them with the strength to persevere. Zachary Kiernan concludes with a heartfelt plea, “Help me get my father back; we need him.”

This poignant story serves as a powerful reminder of the unforeseen challenges that can emerge from the most selfless acts. It underscores the significance of thorough consideration and preparation when making decisions involving major medical procedures. Moreover, it highlights the necessity of clear communication between patients, healthcare professionals, and institutions to ensure that those who make such compassionate sacrifices receive the care and assistance they unequivocally deserve.

For further information or media inquiries, please contact:  Zachary Kiernan Son of Kevin Kiernan at 201-819-4470 or


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